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This happens every day

Michael Wood: On Paul Celan, 29 July 2021

Under the Dome: Walks with Paul Celan 
by Jean Daive, translated by Rosmarie Waldrop.
City Lights, 186 pp., £11.99, November 2020, 978 0 87286 808 3
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Microliths They Are, Little Stones: Posthumous Prose 
by Paul Celan, translated by Pierre Joris.
Contra Mundum, 293 pp., £20, October 2020, 978 1 940625 36 2
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Memory Rose into Threshold Speech: The Collected Earlier Poetry 
by Paul Celan, translated by Pierre Joris.
Farrar, Straus, 549 pp., £32, November 2020, 978 0 374 29837 1
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... poetry, especially of the civilised-barbaric kind, doesn’t know how to do anything but caress. Pierre Joris quotes Celan as saying something similar in relation to ‘euphony’ in poetry, ‘which more or less blithely continued to sound alongside the greatest horrors’.The German language, like English, uses words as building blocks, but prefers to ...


Michael Hofmann, 23 May 1996

Paul Celan: Poet, Survivor, Jew 
by John Felstiner.
Yale, 344 pp., £19.95, June 1995, 0 300 06068 8
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by Paul Celan, translated by Pierre Joris.
Sun & Moon, 261 pp., $21.95, September 1995, 1 55713 218 6
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... especially that of his mother, were to remain the core experiences of his life,’ writes Pierre Joris in a biographical note. Celan himself did forced labour. When the Russians retook the Bukovina, he went back to Czernowitz. In 1945, having anagrammatised himself to Paul Celan, he was in Bucharest, where an early version of his most celebrated ...

Thoughts about Boars and Paul Celan

Lawrence Norfolk: The Ways of the Boar, 6 January 2011

... up by wild boars. This is from a later poem in Atemwende (1967); the English translation is by Pierre Joris. WEGE IM SCHATTEN-GEBRÄCH deiner Hand. Aus der Vier-Finger-Furche wühl ich mir den versteinerten Segen PATHS IN THE SHADOW-BREAK of your hand. From the four-finger-furrow I root up the petrified blessing. If not the whole boar, at ...

No One Leaves Her Place in Line

Jeremy Harding: Martha Gellhorn, 7 May 1998

... the main character, a young mulatta, thinks mostly about her affair with a good-looking Frenchman, Pierre Vauclain, and her disastrous marriage to another, older Frenchman, a cynic and a dog, on the Caribbean island where the novel is set. That thinking goes round in decreasing circles of desperation and allows the novel itself to think the bigger thoughts ...

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