"Become aware what is in you. Announce it, pronounce it, produce it and give birth to it." - Meister Eckhart

17 May 2013

"The Man Watching" by Rainer Maria Rilke

As a child I loved the power of storms to drive us all indoors, to make us stop and look in awe and humility. We can learn a lot from trees and storms about how we might be in the world. MW, Edinburgh 17 May 2013


"The Man Watching"
by Rainer Maria Rilke

I can tell by the way the trees beat, after
so many dull days, on my worried windowpanes
that a storm is coming,
and I hear the far-off fields say things
I can't bear without a friend,
I can't love without a sister.

The storm, the shifter of shapes, drives on
across the woods and across time,
and the world looks as if it had no age:
the landscape like a line in the psalm book,
is seriousness and weight and eternity.

What we choose to fight is so tiny!
What fights 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.
I mean the Angel who appeared
to the wrestlers of the Old Testament:
when the wrestler's sinews
grew long like metal strings,
he felt them under his fingers
like chords of deep music.

Whoever was beaten by this Angel
(who often simply declined the fight)
went away proud and strengthened
and great from that harsh hand,
that kneaded him as if to change his shape.
Winning does not tempt that man.
This is how he grows: by being defeated, decisively,
by constantly greater beings.

English trans. from German by Robert Bly

13 May 2013

The Teller and the Tale Radio

I'm pleased and excited to announce that I've been commissioned to produce a series of storytelling radio programmes for Blues and Roots Radio in Canada.

The series is called "The Teller and the Tale" and will feature many of Scotland's finest storytellers and their tales. These 30-min programmes will introduce a different storyteller in conversation with myself and we'll get to hear one of their stories and thoughts on the art of storytelling.

I've already produced one show with a number of others in the works. Subscribe to my blog and you won't miss out on the latest news about the series. Dates and broadcast times to be announced.

In the meantime, learn more about Blues and Roots Radio at http://www.bluesandrootsradio.ca.

Testimonials

"We have received only very positive reports of your workshop, and must thank you for being so flexible and responsive both before and in the course of implementing the workshop. It has been lovely to work with you. . . . We are hopeful this project will give rise to future storytelling endeavours, and would be very happy to work with you again if the opportunity arises!" Muireann Crowley, At Home in Scotland, University of Edinburgh, May 2014 ("Storytelling, Research and Public Engagement" workshop)

Michael Williams is a a storyteller of compelling skill. He is also a fine human being who engages in all situations and draws people into the warmth of communication and shared experience." Donald Smith, Director, Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh Scotland

"Michael's understanding of storytelling within a leadership and business context has helped us provide a great service in helping leaders determine their personal and organisational destiny and legacy. Working with Michael is inspiring and fun; and pulls you to be fully engaged from start to finish." Norton Bertram-Smith, Managing Director and Leadership Consultant for On Purpose.

Kamink: the little boy who grew into a giant of a man

Blues and Roots Radio

Blues and Roots Radio
Check out my weekly storytelling radio show, The Teller and the Tale on bluesandrootsradio.com.

Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland
I'm grateful to Creative Scotland for its support.