Today is my birthday, and I was thinking, the older I get the more I enjoy sharing—everything from food and waves to experiences and my heart. Even this space, which I never intended to be a place for sharing, has become partially that.

So here is what I have to share today: one of the most important pieces of writing to me. Rainer Maria Rilke’s “For the Sake of a Single Poem,” with original marks from the first time I read it in college. Its meaning changes and deepens for me all the time (but Rilke tattoos are forever!).


Source: From The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge, The Selected Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke

Categories: words


  1. Happy birthday Jenny ! 🙂

  2. happy birthday to you!

  3. Happy birthday, Jenny! Hope you have a fabulous day!
    Much love,

  4. Happy birthday Jenny! I read your blog everyday and it’s a great source of inspiration for me! Please dont stop! 🙂

  5. brilliant words, and a very happy b-day x

  6. A beautiful passage! Wishing you the happiest birthday! I hope it’s an amazing year for you.


  7. Happy birthday Jenny! I have my birthday tomorrow as well and I’m having a beach party today! I know you’re a sea girl and it would be awesome to join as if it weren’t for an ocean between us!
    Love, Eleni from Greece

  8. Anonymous says:

    July 23rd, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Jenny, recent studies have shown that the more birthdays you have, the longer you live! Enjoy your day, Sweetheart.

    -Cassius D.

  9. Happy birthday! I hope you don’t mind but i just posted this over on my blog. I have been writing and writing lately and just so frustrated that i haven’t been able to write any poems, just record my experiences. And this just a) almost made me weep and b) was exactly what i needed to hear.

  10. Have a very happy birthday. This piece was beautiful…thank you for sharing as always.

    xx the cheap

  11. Happy birthday to you ! I often come here and I like it… Have good week end !

  12. Happy Birthday, Jenny. I’m so thankful you have shared in this form. Your blog is a special place for me when I want to inquire, to think, and – many times – to be understood.

  13. Happy Birthday! And thanks for sharing that piece of writing. It was beautiful.

  14. Happy Birthday, Jenny! I, too, love Rilke–his writings profoundly influenced me in undergrad and thereafter. This is a great passage.

  15. A belated Happy Birthday! Thanks for sharing this piece of writing – it’s wonderful.

  16. Reading this gave me chills. Isn’t it amazing how someone can express the idea of single poem so beautifully? It’s like the culmination of every moment of someone’s life. He is one of my favorites.

  17. […] These are not my annotations, but I love them. They are borrowed from Audrey Road. […]