To What Can We Turn

Oh, to what, then, can we turn
in our need?
Not to an angel. Not to a person.
Animals, perceptive as they are,
notice that we are not really at home
in this world of ours. Perhaps there is
a particular tree we see every day on the hillside,
or a street we have walked,
or the warped loyalty of habit
that does not abandon us.

Oh, and night, the night, when wind
hurls the universe at our faces.
For whom is night not there?

— Rilke, From the First Duino Elegy

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