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Songs in flight gathers together Bachmann's two celebrated books of poetry, as well as the early and late poems not collected in book form. Given that Bachmann and Paul Celan are considered to be the two most important poets to emerge in post-war German letters, this volume represents an introduction to a major voice in 20th-century poetry that is long overdue.
Influencing numerous writers from Thomas Bernhard to Christa Wolf, Bachmann's poetic investigation into the nature and limits of language in the face of history remains unmatched in its ability to combine philosophical insight with haunting lyricism. Just as Bachmann's Malina sought to expand the possibilities of the novel, Songs in Flight contains the bedrock of a vision as far reaching as it is indelible, and as uncompromising as it is bound to hope.
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This collection brings to an English-speaking audience virtually the entire poetic output of one of the most important post-war European poets, offering the original German and sensitive translations by poet Filkins. At the time of her death by fire in 1973, Bachmann's fame as a poet had waned somewhat because she had stopped writing poetry in favor of prose. But her work has since been rediscovered, and is all the more lasting for being written in a style that could be called transhistorical: she addressed the horrors of World War II and the problem of approaching the unspeakable, yet did so in an expressionistic, symbolic and even allegorical poetic mode. Her images are still profoundly striking now, and her admonitions to remember are still forceful. While this poetry is wholly unlike the personal first-person lyric in English, Bachmann is more accessible than her contemporary, Paul Celan, whom she in some ways resembles. Though somber, her poems are ultimately attempts to rebuild a world, first in imagination and, ironically, with the fragments of the past: "Out of our dreams, gold can still be filtered,/ while under the sea our legacy still lies."
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Marsilio Publishers, 1994. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # P111568860099
Book Description Marsilio Pub, 1994. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1568860099