Friday, 31 January 2014

Death-Fugue, by Paul Celan



 Paul Celan
 
I Hear
I hear, the Axe has flowered,
I hear, the Place is unnameable,
I hear, the Bread, that looks on him,
heals the Hanged-Man,
the Bread, his Wife baked for him,
I hear, they name Life
our sole Refuge.
*

Death-Fugue

Black Milk of Daybreak we drink it at evening
we drink it at noon and morning we drink it at night
we drink and we drink
we dig at a Grave in the Air there one lies unconfined
A Man lives in the House he plays with the Serpents he
writes
he writes while it falls dark over Germany your golden
  Hair Margerete
he writes and steps from the House and they’re shining the Stars he
  whistles his Jews up to dig at a Grave in the Earth
he commands us to strike up the Dance.

Black Milk of Daybreak we drink you at night
we drink you at morning and noon we drink you at evening
we drink and we drink
A Man lives in the House he plays with the Serpents he
writes
he writes while it falls dark over Germany your golden
  Hair Margerete
Your ashen Hair Shulamith we dig at a Grave in the
  Air there one lies unconfined

He cries dig the soil deeper you there you others sing out and
  play
he grabs the Steel at his Belt he waves it his Eyes are
  blue
dig your Spades deeper you there you others play on for
  the Dance

Black Milk of Daybreak we drink you at night
we drink you at noon and morning we drink you at evening
we drink and we drink
a Man lives in the House your golden hair Margarete
your ashen Hair Shulamith he plays with the Serpents

He cries play Death more sweetly Death is a Master from
  Germany
He cries stroke the Strings more darkly you’ll rise like Smoke in
  the Air
then a Grave you’ll have in the Clouds there one lies unconfined

Black Milk of Daybreak we drink you at night
we drink you at noon Death is a Master from
  Germany
we drink you at evening and morning we drink and we drink
Death is a Master from Germany his Eye is blue
he strikes you with leaden Bullets he strikes you true
a Man lives in the House your golden Hair Margarete
he sets his Dogs onto us and he grants us a Grave in the Air
he plays with the Serpents and dreams Death is a Master
  from Germany

your golden Hair Margarete
your ashen Hair Shulamith
Post a Comment