Günter Eich's Angina Days: Selected Poems PDF

By Günter Eich

ISBN-10: 0691144974

ISBN-13: 9780691144979

This can be the main finished English translation of the paintings of Günter Eich, one of many maximum postwar German poets. the writer of the POW poem "Inventory," between probably the most well-known lyrics within the German language, Eich was once rivaled in simple terms through Paul Celan because the top poet within the new release after Gottfried Benn and Bertolt Brecht. Expertly translated and brought by way of Michael Hofmann, this assortment gathers 80 poems, many drawn from Eich's later paintings and such a lot of them translated the following for the 1st time. the amount additionally comprises the unique German texts on dealing with pages.

As an early member of "Gruppe 47" (from which Günter Grass and Heinrich Böll later shot to prominence), Eich (1907-72) used to be on the forefront of an attempt to revive German as a language for poetry after the vitriol, propaganda, and lies of the 3rd Reich. brief and transparent, those are undying poems within which the ominousness of fairy stories meets the delicacy and suggestiveness of some distance japanese poetry. In his past due poems, he writes usually, movingly, and infrequently wryly of illness and affliction. "To my mind," Hofmann writes, "there's anything in Eich of Paul Klee's photographs: either are home made, modest in scale, instantly pleasant, creative, cogent."

Unjustly overlooked in English, Eich reveals his excellent translator right here.

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Extra info for Angina Days: Selected Poems

Sample text

The crows have unfolded a possum’s skin, pluck its still red innards like seeds from the pulp of a pomegranate. Once, my mother told me God loves crows more than all other birds—how they fend for themselves, not just picking each corpse clean, but erecting tools to torture larvae from rotting logs, throwing snails at the hard stones below to expose soft bodies, whittling twigs to shiv grubs. Here, in the summer heat, crows orbit their noonday meat, satellites spinning around a dead world. My cupped hands splash water on my face, and I recall how my mother would say grace: Hunger is only the first of our trials, God bless those who have learned to compete.

29 } On Confession I have pumped all my quarters into slots, tossed enough pennies into sacred wells to know I have no luck. Chance takes his turn with whomever he pleases, and this time he’s led me to your hands, which shackle me to the wheel, launch clusters of cutlery toward my head: if you miss, it’s a win, but don’t aim too high, too wide—spectators want the rush, the relief, slender closeness of almost. When I leave, they want to see the target shot with woman-shaped holes, thrill of a petty theft, as if they had picked the pocket of death, or stood astonished on the sidewalk while the trussed piano slipped its rope and fell just shy, so they heard the clatter, watched the splinters fly, but walked away safe.

Once, to cheer her, I paint her nails, each a different color, the enamel smearing up to her knuckles when the crying starts again. The eighth night, when she tells me she misses him, I’m kneeling in the bethel of the bathroom, bent over the tub, raking a razor through the thick lather on her legs, and when she says, take me home, I nick her ankle just enough to draw blood, one rusty drop that slides to the surface of the water, shimmies its tendrils into the murk, and is gone. { 37 } Shivaree for the Bride-to-Be There will be no honeymoon without my voice thumping under your pillow the way a shovelful of dirt batters a casket, no first night without the clamor I’ll summon, each note heavy as a third body in the bed.

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Angina Days: Selected Poems by Günter Eich

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