The rich and fortunate do well to keep silent,
by Rainer Maria Rilke
for no one cares to know who and what they are.
But those in need must reveal themselves,
must say: I am blind,
or: I'm on the verge of going blind,
or: nothing goes well with me on earth,
or: I have a sickly child,
or: I have little to hold me together...
And chances are this is not nearly enough.
And because people try to ignore them as they
pass by them: these unfortunate ones have to sing!
And at times one hears some excellent singing!
Of course, people differ in their tastes: some would
prefer to listen to choirs of boy-castrati.
But God himself comes often and stays long,
when the castrati's singing disturbs Him.
Translated by Albert Ernest Flemming