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The correspondence between Bohemian-Austrian poet Rainer Maria Rilke and Franz Xaver Kappus, 19-year old officer cadet at the Theresian Military Academy, occurred between 1902 and 1908. In this collection of ten letters known as "Letters to a Young Poet" Franz Kappus seeks advice on the quality of his poetry from Rilke. Direct criticism of Kappus' poetry, Rilke argues in his response, is not something he can do because as he writes, "Nobody can advise you and help you, nobody. There is only one way. Go into yourself." Over the course of these ten letters Rilke offers more than just advice on being a great poet but for living as he advises Kappus to focus on how he should feel, love, and seek truth in trying to understand and experience the world around him. Written during a key period of Rilke's early artistic development this short work gives us a beautiful insight into the mind of a great poet.
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