Oppressive Light: Selected Poems by Robert Walser

Overview


Poetry. Translated from the German by Daniele Pantano. Introduction by Carolyn Forché. OPPRESSIVE LIGHT represents the first collection of Robert Walser's poetry in English translation and an opportunity to experience Walser as he saw himself at the beginning and at the end of his literary career—as a poet. The collection also includes notes on dates of composition, draft versions the printed poems represent, which volume of the Werkausgabe the poems were first published in, and brief biographical information on...
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Overview


Poetry. Translated from the German by Daniele Pantano. Introduction by Carolyn Forché. OPPRESSIVE LIGHT represents the first collection of Robert Walser's poetry in English translation and an opportunity to experience Walser as he saw himself at the beginning and at the end of his literary career—as a poet. The collection also includes notes on dates of composition, draft versions the printed poems represent, which volume of the Werkausgabe the poems were first published in, and brief biographical information on characters and locations that appear in the poems and may not be known to readers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781936873180
  • Publisher: Black Lawrence Press
  • Publication date: 4/10/2012
  • Edition description: Translatio
  • Pages: 200
  • Sales rank: 1,132,484
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author


Born 1878 in Switzerland, Robert Walser was at various times in his life a bank teller, office clerk, scribe, house servant, machinist's assistant, and archivist. Although he wrote four novels and some poetry, his production consisted mainly of hundreds of small prose pieces. Being small was a key concern. His writing got smaller and smaller until, before he ceased writing altogether, he wrote a tiny script with letters about one millimeter high. By this time he had committed himself to a sanitarium where he remained for 27 years, mostly not writing. Always an avid taker of walks, Walser died in a snowdrift while out for a walk in 1956.
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Table of Contents

Introduction Carolyn Forché xi

From Early Lyrics (1897-1912)

From Poems (1909)

In the Office Im Bureau 4

Evening (I) Abend (I) 6

Winter Sun Wintersonne 8

But Why? Warum auch? 10

The Trees (I) Die Bäume (I) 12

Rushing Brausen 14

As Always Wie immer 16

Fear (I) Angst (I) 18

Tryst Schäferstunde 20

Returning Home (I) Heimkehr (I) 22

Onwards Weiter 24

Sin Sünde 26

A Little Landscape Ein Landschäftchen 28

Put Aside Beiseit 30

Oppressive Light Drückendes Licht 32

Afraid Bangen 34

You Do See? Seht ihr 36

And Left Und ging 38

Hour Stunde 40

From String and Desire (Posthumously Published Manuscript)

Meadow Green Wiesengrün 44

Evening (II) Abend (II) 46

At the Window (II) Am Fenster (II) 48

Everything Green Alles Grün 50

The Beloved Das Geliebte 52

Under a Gray Sky Unter grauem Himmel 54

Evening Song Abendlied 56

Beer Scene Bierszene 58

From Further Selections (1897-1905)

Gloomy Neighbor Trüber Nachbar 62

Closing Time Feierabend 64

Faint-Hearted Mutlos 66

Tragedy Trauerspiel 68

From Poems Written in Biel (1919-1920)

Spring (I) Frühling (I) 72

October Oktober 76

After Drawings by Daumier Nach Zeichnungen von Daumier 80

From Poems Written in Berne (1924-1933)

How the Small Hills Smiled Wie die Hügelchen lächelten 86

Sunday Morning Flags Sonntagvormittägliche Fahnen 90

Sensation Empfindung 92

The Seasons Die Jahreszeiten 94

How I Saw a Leaf Falling Wie ich ein Blatt fallen sah 96

Parade Festzug 98

Longing Das Sehnen 102

Autumn (II) Herbst(II) 104

The Reader Der Leser 106

Joy of Life Lebensfreude 108

Summer Sommer 110

The Comfort of Complaining Annehmlichkeit des Klagens 112

Sleep Schlaf 114

The Beautiful Das Schöne 116

High Art Hohe Schule 118

The Jail Sonnet Das Sonett vom Zuchthaus 120

Riddles Rätsel 122

Lady in Riding Habit Die Dame im Reitkleid 124

The Girl with the Beautiful Eyes Das Mädchen mit den schönen Augen 126

To Georg Trakl An Georg Trakl 128

The Companion Der Gefährte 130

Self-Reflection Selbstschau 132

The Archivist Der Archivar 134

Gloss Glosse 136

The Lucky One Der Glückliche 140

Story Erzählung 142

My Fiftieth Birthday Der fünfzigste Geburtstag 144

She Was Bored Sie langweilte sich 148

Contemplation Beschaulichkeit 150

Afterword 153

References 163

Acknowledgments 169

About the Author 171

About the Translator 171

Index of Titles and First Lines in English 173

Index of Titles and First Lines in German 177

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