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Neue Gedichte / New Poems
Translated by Stephen Cohn
Categories: 19th Century, 20th Century, German
Imprint: Fyfield Books
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Paperback (240 pages)
(Pub. Jul 2004)
As he went about among the real
(he, so urgent, who could only seem)
like a hint of danger, like a thrill
something glittered in the spacious room
which he traversed smiling...
from 'The Adventurer'
Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926), one of the greatest German-language poets, is among the key figures in modern Western literature. The Neue Gedichte (New Poems of 1907-8 are some of the freshest and most accessible of his works. For some months during 1905-6 Rilke had acted as secretary to Auguste Rodin, and the great sculptor's example can be seen in the shape and texture of the Neue Gedichte. 'Rilke,' writes John Bayley in his introduction, 'is one of those rare poets who seem not so much to create as to reveal.'
Stephen Cohn's outstanding translations of Rilke's New Poems, Duino Elegies and Sonnets to Orpheus (all available from Carcanet Press) have become celebrated for their creative response to the subtlety and complexity of the original poems.
Cover image, Found Objects from the Lost City (detail), lithograph, Copyright Stephen Cohn 2000. Cover design StephenRaw.com
For more information on Rilke and Cohn, go to rainermariarilke.net.
'Cohn has added a natural eloquence of his own which makes his version of the Elegies the most flowing and organic of those I have read.' - Peter Porter 'Rilke has never "moved" so naturally into another language as he seems to do in Stephen Cohn's renderings of these poems.' - John Bayley 'The reader with no German can enjoy this volume from beginning to end.' - Stephen Spender
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