Skip to content

Keywords

Articles tagged "Paul Celan"

Death Fugue

Sheng Keyi’s Death Fugue, which takes its title from the famous poem by Paul Celan, is an absurdist allegorical tale about freedom and shackles, rebellion and dictatorship. The protagonist, Yuan Mengliu, is a poet who gives up poetry to become a doctor and moves to a city he thinks is Utopia, only to realize that it is controlled by a dictatorship. In this scene, Yuan Mengliu goes on a walk with a woman from the city. Yuan Mengliu did not worry about the precise location of the...

Correspondences in the Air: On The Ecco Anthology of International Poetry

Octavio Paz once wrote that the modern poet “extracts his visions from within himself.”  It is my hope that our comprehensive, aesthetically varied anthology of poetry from around the globe will allow American poets and readers a chance to extract such visions not just from “within themselves” but in conversation with a global poetic tradition. Reading an anthology of world poetry gives one a chance to overhear similarities, or what Anna Akhmatova once called...

An Exchange on Nation and Exile

"Perhaps I am one of the last who must live out to the end the destiny of the Jewish spirit in Europe." Why "must"? Writing from Paris in August 1948 to relatives in the new state of Israel, Paul Celan, having barely survived the "Final Solution" expedited by Nazism, explains that a poet cannot stop writing, "even when he is a Jew and the language of his poems is German." This fateful pledge, from a brutally orphaned son whose stirring 1945 ballad, "Deathfugue," intones "Death is a...

Last Night

From the trees planted by dusk in our rooms that were set on fire we'll slowly untie the glass pigeons, that eternal foliage; they'll grow rustling on our shoulders and arms, and there will be no wind, but rather a pool of shadows, in which you cannot take root, a frozen lake, in which the drowned are competing for the crown of scales, and life is the boat at the shore, abandoned by its oars. A voice will come to us from the flames to stain its silver with blood, to...

Like what you read? Help WWB bring you the best new writing from around the world.