Sunday, August 19, 2007

Clara Reads Rilke's "Das Karussell"


Found this fascinating audio file of Clara Westhoff-Rilke reading her late husband's poem "The Carrousel," which describes the colorful children's merry-go-round (still standing) in Luxembourg Gardens. Her reading beautifully captures the lyrical cadences of Rilke's German.

Listen for the rhythmic, recurring line:

"Und dann und wann ein Wei├čer Elefant." ("And here and there a white elephant")

The audio file can be found in situ at the Rilke-Worpswede website (click on the "audio" link at the upper right).

(The other link at the upper right, "Rilke und Worpswede Bilder," is a lovely musical slideshow of paintings by Worpswede artists who were Rilke's contemporaries: Otto Modersohn, Heinrich Vogeler, Fritz Mackensen.)

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