Letters to a Young Poet

Narrated by: Stephen Mitchell
Length: 1 hr and 18 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (224 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Ranier Maria Rilke challenges you, "...to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answers." Rilke's ability to combine the sensual and the spiritual into an inspired vision of the art of living is brought to vivid life in his letters. Through his eyes, the everyday difficulties of love, sex, solitude, sadness, and doubt are seen as the archetypal elements of the drama called life.
Recording (P)1990 by Audio Literature; Copyright ©1984 by Stephen Mitchell

Critic Reviews

"Stephen Mitchell's new translation of Letters to a Young Poet...seems to be the best yet." (Newsday)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Priceless Recordings of Intense Feeling

The first experience I had with Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet was a tape I had purchased, without much expectation, from a local bookstore. I had recently been very captivated by Rilke's poems, but thought letters to another person could hardly be captivating, and would most likely be rather tawdry. I was very wrong. The letters, when heard, have I think an unalterable effect on a personality. They make one question oneself and one's surroundings. Question god and solitude, question what it means to be an artist, but more, what it means to look at the world and try to absorb and interact with it. To live as a human being. Among the creatures and the people. The act of sex and that of death. But with everything, there is a trust that if one looks at something with enough patience, the thing will yield itself, that one will be able to gain understanding, and that nothing that is observed fully is ever lost.
A tremendous recording and reproduction by Audible.com. My only recommendation would be to seperate each letter into an individual audio file, if possible. For even though they stand wonderfully together, it is nearly 80 minutes, and slightly much for a single sitting. But it is an admitedly small complaint.

24 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

rilke at peace

this is a wonderful translation of one of the 20th century s earliest and best gifts. i loved the reading as well, listened to it five or six times in a row, and am still listening to it at night. a peaceful reading of a wise book, with wisdom for poets and anyone else who wants to live an authentic life. the book is also a moving testimony of the total commitment to poetry with which rilke lived every day of his life.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

good reader; bad audio output

i love rilke and liked Mitchell's reading but overall audio was low, hard to hear

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Astounding Insights

A most important novel. I wept in parts. The audio is muffled and bass heavy.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

My Question, My Life, My Solitude

Today I randomly found this book because I asked a question to the universe about my life, about my solitude. Within the first few words of this book I found my answer.

So yes.. I would have to say this is an EXCELLENT book if you are trying to figure out your life especially as a fellow writer/poet such as myself. Author Nicole Vincent

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

bueno

la voz en monotonna y tiene estatica. El texto es hermoso, pero es dificil concentrarse con el estilo del narrador

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

beautiful writings and sound advice

narrator very clear
the story line is something everyone can relate to not just poets/writers

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Complicated. Just the way I like it.

Its a book that tickles your thoughts. Its short and can rehear it various times. Every time I listen I forget what I was thinking last time and new thoughts emerge. Paying atention is complicated because of the plethora of thoughts i have with each sentence. great Hear. Greatly recomend it. Narration is great too!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Beautiful

Poets, writers, and people who drink life fully to the breadth and depth the heart can feel will enjoy the experience of this narration. Amazing!