Rainer Maria Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet, perhaps the most dog-eared book on my shelves, doesn’t give advice on writing poetry. Instead, it’s what Einstein –his contemporary — might have written if he had been a poet. Compare the Theory of Relativity to this statement: “People have already had to rethink so many concepts of motion; and they will also gradually come to realize that what we call fate does not come into us from the outside, but emerges from us. . . . The future stands still, dear Mr. Kappus, but we move in infinite space (86)”.
Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet, translated by Stephen Mitchell (New York: Vintage Books: 1984), 85-6.