Review of “Welchen der Steine du hebst” (1955)


Paul Celan (writer).

Read in 2022.

Read in its original language and in Swedish-language prose translation.

Whichever stone you lift –
you lay bare
those in need of the stones’ shelter:
they now renew the intertwining.

Celan (Anczel) likened poetry to putting a message in a bottle on the ocean. This particular example reads like a Zen koan on a Daoist theme of subtle backlash and resilience, which is a good thing to put in a bottle if you must.

References here: Modern utländsk lyrik (1975/1985).

text poetry