Rilke's French poetry appears here for the first time in readable, musical versions. Largely unknown and rarely collected, these poems were written during the euphoria Rilke felt after having completed his greatest German works, the Duino Elegies and the Sonnets to Orpheus. At the same time, Rilke was growing increasingly ill with a rare, undiagnosed form of leukemia. He died just four short years into the production of these poems, and death appears in them as “a kindly, unfamiliar figure” to be faced with courage and surrender. Five series of poems are featured: Roses, Windows, Affectionate Tribute to France, Valaisian Quatrains, and Orchards.