translated from the German
by various American poets
poems, 112 pages, offset, smyth-sewn
ISSN 1077-4203 "Dichten ="
ISBN 1-886224-34-X, OUT OF PRINT
Ernst Jandl's poems are so
engrained in the German language that they are
impossible to translate. This volume present an unusual experiment:
German poem there is not one, but several adaptations, so that the
is encircled by multiple English analogues. The responses range from
imitations to freewheeling versions that continue Jandl's thinking
Ernst Jandl was born in 1925 in Vienna. He began publishing poems
and quickly attracted the attention as the wittiest and most exuberant
experimental poets, with a knack for uncovering the comic potential
discrepancies between sound and spelling, in clichés, mispronunciations,
dialect etc. Readers with a bit of German will enjoy his 'surface
"My heart leaps up when I behold" into mai hart lieb
zapfen eibe hold.... He
has not only explored the limits of language in his visual and sound
but has written powerful political commentary by playing with "Ausländerdeutsch,"
the kind of pidgin German spoken by foreign workers.
He has translated Gertrude Stein, Robert Creeley's The Island,
and John Cage's
Among his many prestigious literary prizes in both Austria and Germany
Georg-Trakl-Preis (1974), Georg-Büchner-Preis and Grosser Österreichischer
Staatspreis (both 1984).
He died in June, 2000.
The translators are Beth Anderson, Lori Baker, Martine Bellen, Guy
Bennett, Charles Bernstein, Leonard Brink, Lee Ann Brown, Laynie Browne,
Norma Cole, Tina Darragh, Ray Di Palma, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Kenward
Elmslie, Elizabeth Fodaski, Benjamin Friedlander, Susan Gevirtz, Anselm
Hollo, Paul Hoover, Damon Krukowski, Elizabeth MacKiernan, Gale Nelson,
Julie Patton, Ray Ragosta, Joan Retallack, Brian Schorn, Lytle Shaw,
James Sherry, Eleni Sikelianos, Cole Swensen, Anne Tardos, Keith Waldrop,
Rosmarie Waldrop, Craig Watson, Marjorie Welish, John Yau.