The Man Watching

What we choose to fight is so tiny!
What fights with us is so great.
If only we would let ourselves be dominated
as things do by some immense storm,
we would become strong too, and not need names.

When we win it’s with small things,
and the triumph itself makes us small.
What is extraordinary and eternal
does not want to be bent by us...

This is how one grows: by being defeated, decisively,
by constantly greater beings.

~ Rainer Maria Rilke from "The Man Watching", translated by Robert Bly