The Boy by Rainer Maria Rilke
I want to be like one of those who race
With bolting steeds across the night-black air,
With flaming torches like unfastened hair
Aflutter in the stormwind of their chase.
I want to stand in front as on a prow,
Erect and slender like a banner scrolled,
Dark but accoutered in a helm of gold,
Which glitters restlessly; aback of me
Ten men, sprung from the same opacity,
In helms unsteadily aglint like mine,
Now clear as glass, now shaded, hoar, and blind.
And one stands next to me and blows us space
Out of a bugle’s lips that scream and flare,
And blows black solitude, our thoroughfare,
Through which, as through a speeding dream, we race:
The houses in our wake drop to their knees,
There snake and skew towards us street and lane,
The squares that veer away from us we seize,
Our horses pelting on like sheets of rain.