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Memory Rose Into Threshold Speech: The Collected Earlier Poetry: A Bilingual Edition

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Memory Rose into Threshold Speech gathers the poet Paul Celan's first four books, written between 1952 and 1963, which established his reputation as the major post-World War II German-language poet. Celan, a Bukovinian Jew who lived through the Holocaust, created work that displays both great lyric power and an uncanny ability to pinpoint totalitarian cultural and polit Memory Rose into Threshold Speech gathers the poet Paul Celan's first four books, written between 1952 and 1963, which established his reputation as the major post-World War II German-language poet. Celan, a Bukovinian Jew who lived through the Holocaust, created work that displays both great lyric power and an uncanny ability to pinpoint totalitarian cultural and political tendencies. His quest, however, is not only reflective: there is in Celan's writing a profound need and desire to create a new, inhabitable world and a new language for it. In Memory Rose into Threshold Speech, Celan's reader witnesses his poetry, which starts lush with surrealistic imagery, become gradually pared down; its syntax tightens and his trademark neologisms and word formations increase toward a polysemic language of great accuracy that tries, in the poet's own words, to measure the area of the given and the possible. Translated by the prize-winning poet and translator Pierre Joris, this bilingual edition follows the 2014 publication of Breathturn into Timestead, Celan's collected later poetry. All nine volumes of Celan's poetry are now available in Joris's carefully crafted translations, accompanied here by a new introduction and extensive commentary. The four volumes in this edition show the flowering of one of the major literary figures of the last century. This volume collects Celan's first four books: Mohn und Ged�chtnis (Poppy and Memory), Von Schwelle zu Schwelle (Threshold to Threshold), Sprachgitter (Speechgrille), and Die Niemandsrose (NoOnesRose).


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Memory Rose into Threshold Speech gathers the poet Paul Celan's first four books, written between 1952 and 1963, which established his reputation as the major post-World War II German-language poet. Celan, a Bukovinian Jew who lived through the Holocaust, created work that displays both great lyric power and an uncanny ability to pinpoint totalitarian cultural and polit Memory Rose into Threshold Speech gathers the poet Paul Celan's first four books, written between 1952 and 1963, which established his reputation as the major post-World War II German-language poet. Celan, a Bukovinian Jew who lived through the Holocaust, created work that displays both great lyric power and an uncanny ability to pinpoint totalitarian cultural and political tendencies. His quest, however, is not only reflective: there is in Celan's writing a profound need and desire to create a new, inhabitable world and a new language for it. In Memory Rose into Threshold Speech, Celan's reader witnesses his poetry, which starts lush with surrealistic imagery, become gradually pared down; its syntax tightens and his trademark neologisms and word formations increase toward a polysemic language of great accuracy that tries, in the poet's own words, to measure the area of the given and the possible. Translated by the prize-winning poet and translator Pierre Joris, this bilingual edition follows the 2014 publication of Breathturn into Timestead, Celan's collected later poetry. All nine volumes of Celan's poetry are now available in Joris's carefully crafted translations, accompanied here by a new introduction and extensive commentary. The four volumes in this edition show the flowering of one of the major literary figures of the last century. This volume collects Celan's first four books: Mohn und Ged�chtnis (Poppy and Memory), Von Schwelle zu Schwelle (Threshold to Threshold), Sprachgitter (Speechgrille), and Die Niemandsrose (NoOnesRose).

39 review for Memory Rose Into Threshold Speech: The Collected Earlier Poetry: A Bilingual Edition

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lou Last

    The Bright Stones The bright stones pass through the air, the bright- white, the light- bringers They don’t want to come down, nor fall, nor hit. They open up like humble dog roses, that’s how they open, they float toward you, my quiet one, you, my true one—: I see you, you gather them with my new, my everyman’s hands, you put them into the Bright-Again no one has to weep for or name. *

  2. 4 out of 5

    David

    The astounding creative engagement between Paul Celan and Pierre Joris comes to a close with this magnificent volume. With spectacular commentary to boot. It's a mighty feat for Joris to bring Celan's "thousand darknesses of deathbringing speech" into English, through a comprehensive vision honed through decades of study. Having translated the entirety of Celan's late work, and having those resonances in mind when approaching the earlier volumes, gives Joris the special qualification as the most The astounding creative engagement between Paul Celan and Pierre Joris comes to a close with this magnificent volume. With spectacular commentary to boot. It's a mighty feat for Joris to bring Celan's "thousand darknesses of deathbringing speech" into English, through a comprehensive vision honed through decades of study. Having translated the entirety of Celan's late work, and having those resonances in mind when approaching the earlier volumes, gives Joris the special qualification as the most critically well-equipped major translator of Celan in English. At times, however, the heavily literal approach that Joris takes to Celan actually makes the poet more difficult to understand—an issue more so in "Breathturn into Timestead," occasionally resulting in whimsy strained to the point of clumsiness—than in this volume of earlier poetry, which is less reliant on grammatical wrings and neologisms. In "Memory Rose into Threshold Speech," Celan sounds more sagely, youthful, lyrical. And yet the graveness of Celan's poetic project constrained his lyricism, and so "beauty" in a conventional sense is not to be expected from work that so intensely seeks to recapture the lives claimed by Shoah. A poetic oeuvre which seeks to repossess moments from those lives, to make what is abstract, what presents itself as a statistic of six million, palpable and terrifying. But for gravity to come off as a haunting misspeaking? Any tonal oddities are meant to be remedied by the precision of Celan scholar Barbara Wiedemann's translated commentary, and Joris thoroughly explains any unusual word choices with great erudition. His scholarly powers shine here as they did in the collection, "Breathturn into Timestead." One does, however, question how well a translation can stand independently, if annotations are meant to travel with it like additional pieces of luggage. Additional commentary is nearly inescapable given Celan's heavily allusive and elusive techniques, But could a less literal approach be more faithful to the letter (as Celan imagined the act of translation) than literalism? Celan himself, as a translator, often strayed from being literal. His reworkings of Dickinson are a very interesting example of this—inserting or cutting away words! In Celan's translation of "Let down the bars, O Death!" he takes the last of the subsequent lines, "The tired flocks come in Whose bleating ceases to repeat, Whose wandering is done." and changes it to "Wer nicht mehr wandert, kommt." ("Who wanders no more, comes.") Any choices made in the spirit of poetic freedom / betrayal of the source could be more effective in American English, but much harder to defend, compared with the rigorous faithfulness to the word that Joris has powerfully and paradigmatically endorsed. But this is not to diminish from Joris's profound accomplishment. Joris's volume is spectacular for a reader no matter their level of experience with the German language. He encourages his readers to think boldly about what is retained, and what is lost in the art of translation. Above all, this culmination of Pierre Joris's Celan project should serve as a great inspiration to readers, poets, and translators alike. Joris's devotion is moving. He asks more of our attention, in the hopes that we may ask more of ourselves, how we read—and to question more deeply what we pursue in long-term engagements with creative figures (whether or not they be Paul Celan) who beckon to us continually, and unexplainably.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Anatoly Molotkov

    "Climb. Grope your way up./ You'll grow thinner, more unrecognizable, finer!/ Finer: a thread/ along which it wants to alight, the star:/ so as to swim further down, down/ where it sees itself gleam: in the swell/ of wandering words." A beautiful bilingual collection in Pierre Joris's accurate and inspired translation is a real treat. Celan's unique tormented voice draws one into the words, as in a reverie; redemption is always there at the tip of the last word. "Climb. Grope your way up./ You'll grow thinner, more unrecognizable, finer!/ Finer: a thread/ along which it wants to alight, the star:/ so as to swim further down, down/ where it sees itself gleam: in the swell/ of wandering words." A beautiful bilingual collection in Pierre Joris's accurate and inspired translation is a real treat. Celan's unique tormented voice draws one into the words, as in a reverie; redemption is always there at the tip of the last word.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Grant

    Death Fugue is obviously a great poem, but I just couldn't really get into any of these others. Found them to be mostly opaque and sometimes indecipherable. Death Fugue is obviously a great poem, but I just couldn't really get into any of these others. Found them to be mostly opaque and sometimes indecipherable.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nathaniel Carlson

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jake Rademacher

  7. 4 out of 5

    Diotima

  8. 4 out of 5

    Robert

  9. 4 out of 5

    Cody Stetzel

  10. 4 out of 5

    Meg

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lavinia

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nick Moran

  13. 4 out of 5

    Mark Fleckenstein

  14. 4 out of 5

    Michael

  15. 5 out of 5

    Gregory

  16. 5 out of 5

    Oiseaux Invisibles

  17. 4 out of 5

    iri

  18. 5 out of 5

    Anna

  19. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Gerry

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sebsopor

  21. 4 out of 5

    Matt

  22. 5 out of 5

    Rich

  23. 4 out of 5

    Adam

  24. 4 out of 5

    Melon109

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kara

  26. 5 out of 5

    nick

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jack Caulfield

  28. 4 out of 5

    iane

  29. 5 out of 5

    Poetry Daily

  30. 5 out of 5

    Christopher J.

  31. 4 out of 5

    Caitlyn

  32. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

  33. 4 out of 5

    Michelle Hogmire

  34. 5 out of 5

    Caitlin

  35. 5 out of 5

    Chad Felix

  36. 4 out of 5

    Leo

  37. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca Valley

  38. 5 out of 5

    Zoia Olubas

  39. 4 out of 5

    Angela

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