The brief space of silence in a stanza break in a poem by Rilke and Wordsworth respectively, serves as a trope for the passage from life to death. Although signs and symbols of irremediable loss, each stanza break resonates with a remainder, a resonant silence, a silence that is audible. Epitomized by the empty space of the stanza break, a poem’s rarity does not consist in what is legible on the page but in what is implied, and audible, by what is not legible.


Rhyme Word Lyric Poetry Poetic Form Fell Swoop Musical Element 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Rainer Maria Rilke, Sämtliche Werke, Frankfurt am Main: Insel Verlag, 1957, vol. 2, 506.Google Scholar
  2. 11.
    Mary Jacobus, Romantic Things: A Tree, a Rock, a Cloud ( Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012 ), 171.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 12.
    Susan Stewart, Poetry and the Fate of the Senses (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002), 101: “The silence of listening permeates the poem — it exists in the silences between sounds and stanzas and the turning of the page.”Google Scholar
  4. 14.
    See Pieter Vermeulen, Geoffrey Hartman: Romanticism after the Holocaust ( New York: Continuum, 2012 ), 91–92.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Harold Schweizer 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Harold Schweizer

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations