Translation

Spring Awakening by Frank Wedekind

spring awakeningSpring Awakening (or The Awakening of Spring as it had been translated into in the past, or the more closely Spring’s Awakening because of the original German title, Frühlings Erwachen) is a particular favorite of mine. Wedekind wrote the play in the late 1800s, but it was not performed until 1905. I have never seen it staged before–although, I know there was some kind of musical adaptation a few years ago–but, as a written text, it works very exquisitely.

“Oh, this feeling of shame!–What good to me is an encyclopedia that won’t answer me concerning the most important question in life?”

These are the words that are declared by Moritz, one of the three main characters of the play. Spring Awakening concerns itself with the fourteen year old school children of the village. There is not much distinguishing the adults (except their funny names: Knochenbruch, Zungenschlag, Fliegentod, tr. broken bone, tonguing or a manner of speaking but literally “tongue hitting,” fly’s death) and they serve to illuminate the lack of sexual education that the children are getting and are often the abusers both physical and emotional.

The play deals with abortion, sex, homosexuality, rape, suicide, and incest, which to say the least, were shameful topics to discuss during the time of the play’s conception. Young Wendla’s older sister has given birth and when her mother goes on about the stork delivering the baby, Wendla insists that her mother tell her the truth. She becomes flustered and refuses to tell her the truth. Instead, her mother concocts the idea that babies only come to women who are married and extremely in love with their husbands. I’m sure, close reader, we all have an idea how that will end. Meanwhile, Wendla’s schoolmates, Moritz and Melchior are also discussing sex. Melchior seems to be the only one of the school children to know anything about the matter and tells Moritz that he will write it all out for him with diagrams included.

The play sometimes carries the subtitle, A Children’s Tragedy. The story unfolds unpleasantly for the three characters because of the undue stress they are put under and the uselessness of the adults. The plot itself is quite intricate for a piece that takes about an hour to read. In his introduction to the 1909 translation, Francis J. Ziegler writes: “‘Frühlings Erwachen’ may not be a pleasant read exactly, but there is no forgetting it after one has perused it; there is an essential strength about it which grips the intellect.”

He is so right in these few words. I could go more into the plot of the play but it would be ill of me to ruin it for those who have never read it. It is boiling with misery, emotions, and brutality. The writing feels like it is part of modernity and a bold piece of art from the later 19th Century. The characters of the children are fleshed out even in just the written word without the help of a staged performance. Each sentences oozes desperation and melancholia. Moritz, Melchior, and Wendla’s frustration is vivid.

You can read Spring Awakening for free at Project Gutenberg (English translation) or Amazon (original German).

This is Number 2 on The [International] Reading List.

The Dinner by Herman Koch

“Every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”

the dinnerI tried not to read too much online about this addictive Dutch novel before reading it. The initial premise was reminiscent of the French play, God of Carnage: two married couples come together for dinner to discuss some mysterious and dreadful incident that involved their sons.

The constraint is the dinner with the novel being divided into sections similar to courses–aperitif, entree, dessert, etc. Koch is excellent at presenting a normal activity (dining) that somehow goes suddenly wrong in so many ways.  The story is told through the first person narration of Paul Lohman who we come to realize is not as he appears or presents himself. Information and certain character developments are held back until the right time. I wouldn’t necessarily call the latter-time reveals “twists” but they were unexpected and made the story much more gripping and compelling. It was almost as if information was being leaked out and then overflowing more as the novel whisked on. The narration becomes less about the sons’ deeds and more about how Paul Lohman’s past can be attributed to the present.

“It might be hard for us to put the events…out of our minds, but in the course of time, they would start to exist outside of us.”

It becomes quite clear halfway through the book that what has already happened even before the incident–in a way–is far more important. Bits of behavior at dinner are dropped in and the order of events that might seem insignificant at first, become key points later on. Koch is really top-notch at crafting this and the translation to English by Sam Garrett seems perfect. I do not know Dutch but I would never in a million years think this was written in any other way than the way the translator presented it. Garrett’s prose makes this feel like a confessional from a reluctant narrator; that we, too, are sitting right there at the dinner table.

I also found pleasure in reading about the experience at the high-end restaurant that the two couples find themselves. Paul Lohman prefers the cafe around the corner that serves his favorite spareribs but finds himself unhappily at this lavish restaurant where every moment of the meal is described to him. In the past year, I’ve written and edit a few restaurant reviews for ridiculous “high-end establishments.” I can’t tell you enough how odd and intrusive it is being briefed and bothered at ever turn during an expensive meal. I prefer my service somewhere between “completely ignored by the unsmiling Ukranian waitress in the corner” to “attentive to my water glass.” Koch is able to perfectly find the correct pitch to poke fun at the silliness of these sorts of restaurants.

The Dinner was a quick and entertaining read. Make sure not to read too much into the plot beforehand, though.

This is Number 6 on The [International] Reading List.

MH900400620

Kafka in Persian

فرانتس کافکا

When it comes to the search terms that bring people my way, it’s usually something about Moby Dick, Kafkaesque, or something completely unintelligible (and, maybe, the occasional search for Fritz Leiber, too). But, yesterday, I was looking through the search terms and something came up in a different script. I copy and pasted it into Google Translate and low and behold, it’s Franz Kafka–but in Persian.

I really know nothing of Farsi and other dialects but it was so intriguing to see Kafka’s name transliterated into a different alphabet (I assume it should be read right to left? Please correct me if I’m wrong).

Chitting and Chatting with writer Emily Thibodeaux about Louisiana French and the new journal, Embrasser

embrasserI was thrilled and excited to recently hear that my friend and writer, Emily Thibodeaux (along with others) had started a new literary translation journal. Based in Louisiana, Embrasser “aims to embrace the history, culture, and stories told in the French dialects spoken outside of the motherland.” They’ve put out a call for submissions with their first issue focusing on Louisiana French (the journal is bilingual so read the details for more info). Below, you’ll find our lovely interview followed by a smorgasbord of information on how to submit, how to get involved, their mission statement, and more. Enjoy!

For a few years, you were living in New York City. What drew you back to your homeland of Louisiana? I was at the end of my graduate studies and had applied to a few jobs in the city, but hadn’t found much. I was surrounded by peers hard at work on their collections or novel, and also by a growing number of people involved in starting their own literary journals. Being that a lot of my work, including a novel in progress, is set in Acadiana, or the French speaking part of Southwest Louisiana, it seemed like the thing to do would be to return home. I also, thankfully, found adjunct employment teaching English at South Louisiana Community College. Being that Cajun French and its preservation is a cause close to my heart, once I was home, I thought that I could address preservation in a more direct way than by only writing a novel; I wanted to make an archive of the best current writing coming out of Louisiana right now, and translate that work into variations of Louisiana French. I also wanted the journal to serve as a learning tool for both Louisiana natives and those interested in learning Louisiana French.

Tell us a little about Louisiana French and why you chose to launch Embrasser—how you got started with it; your collaborators. Louisiana French is multi-valent; there are as many variations in spelling and usage as there are parishes. It is mostly an oral language, however, an excellent new dictionary, the Dictionary of Louisiana French as Spoken by Cajun, Creole, and American Indian Communities, a collaborative project between the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and a few other universities, which has been years in the making, came out a few years ago; it seeks to be as comprehensive and inclusive as possible, listing the parish where the word was collected and alternative spellings. I would like to take cues from the dictionary and to represent Louisiana French as it is spoken, and to accept non-standard spellings of words which are unique to each translator.

Cajun, the type of Louisiana French of which I am most intimately familiar, is made up of the French as spoken by the original French colonists in North America, the Acadians, who settled in Maritime Canada, along with Native American, and African influences. The Acadians, from where the word Cajun originates, were expelled from Acadie, modern day Nova Scotia, by the British in 1755. The bulk of Acadians were sent to Louisiana, while others were sent to Maine, Maryland, or back to France. Louisiana French was spoken in relative isolation before my grandparents’ generation it was not allowed to be spoken in schools. They were beaten with rubber hoses amongst other humiliating punishments for speaking their mother tongue. Now, there is an urgent need for preservation.

My mentor and advisor in this project is Rikki Ducornet, . She envisioned Embrasser as more of a global translation journal, whereas I had only originally focused on Louisiana. Jonathan Penton of Coeur Publishing, a small translation press funded by the Swiss Arts Council to translate work from German, is acting as publisher and helping with many aspects of the journal from public relations to website design, and my co-editor is Rosalyn Spencer who is a poet and Louisiana native who has worked in every aspect of the book industry. The name, Embrasser, means to hug and kiss, the obvious English cognate word being “embrace.” The idea of the journal is to connect and embrace unique varieties of international French. We accept work from Louisiana residents and also work from those outside of Louisiana who are writing about Louisiana French, or the Louisiana experience.

Official call for submissions. Click on image to read PDF for more information.

Official call for submissions. Click on image to read PDF for more information.

I am all about more literary translation in the US. How can people become more involved beyond just submitting to the journal? If people are interested in translating into Louisiana French, which includes Cajun, Creole, and French as spoken by Native Americans, they can email me at embrasser@coeurpublishing.com. Please check out the Facebook Page and the Embrasser website for updates about future issues. I will be calling for translators as well as for submissions for each issue, because the highlighted regions will change, and I would love to hear from you if you are interested in literary translation.

What do you see in Embrasser’s future? Embrasser will be published annually, with our first issue coming out for Mardi Gras 2014. In the future, Embrasser will focus on other francophone regions outside of France from French speaking Canada and Haiti to the Maghreb. Ideally, we will be able to find translators from these regions to translate submissions. The translators will vary from region to region, whereas the editors will remain the same. Embrasser seeks to highlight and preserve varieties of French that have been marginalized, and through this project, I would hope that excellent work could be exposed to the Anglophone world and also for there to be transfer and communication between these Francophone regions.

What have you been up to in Louisiana since leaving NYC? Any other new and exciting projects? I have been up to a lot! I wrote a play, “Bataille,” which was directed by a very talented friend, Jarin Schexsnider, which was performed in my house. I was on the submissions board for a new literary journal out of Baton Rouge, Belle Journal, which focuses on the experience of being a woman in the South (which also publishes men under feminine pen names!) I have also read some of my work at a local Lafayette reading series, Voices, and have done some dance including a contemporary ballet of Alice in Wonderland. I am currently involved in a local production of Hair, a contemporary dance piece to be performed at the New Orleans Fringe Festival, and am involved with starting Lafayette’s only burlesque troupe, Boom! Boom! Burlesque. I also paint faces for extra money. Basically, I’ve moved back home to join the circus, and I’m kind of loving it!

Which is a better literary prize? 100 bottles of wine or jet ski? It depends on what kind of wine it is! I might have to go with that.

***

  • If you missed the PDF with the official call of submissions, you can find it here.
  • Embrasser is also seeking translators who love Louisiana French culture and literature to assist with the first issue. More details here.
  • The mission statement which details more about what the journal is about and how it goes beyond Louisiana French.

The Translator | Nina Schuyler

TheTranslatorOf course, my interest was immediately peaked by Nina Schuyler’s newest novel when I saw the title and then when I read further, the description did indeed outline that this tale was focused on a Japanese-to-English translator.

The Translator is about Hanne, a middle-aged woman who grew up in Europe speaking German, Dutch, and English who had moved to the US where she mastered Japanese. Hanne is finishing the translation of a popular Japanese novelist when she has a head injury. She awakes in the hospital only speaking Japanese. She is unable to communicate in the languages of her youth and only in this language she learned later in life. (what was quite odd about this was that on my second day into the novel, I read an article about a man in Florida waking up after an accident only speaking Swedish and unable to speak in his mother tongue.) Frustrated, Hanne takes off for Tokyo to attend a conference she initially turned down. During a lecture she is giving, Hanne is interrupted by the incredibly frustrated Japanese novelist she had been translating. He hated her translation and continued to publicly shame her.

The story flows as easily as a leaf falling from a tree branch. Somehow Schuyler has weaved a mystery through the plot as well. As Hanne is trying to sort through how she could have gone terribly wrong with this translation, small slivers of detail surrounding the main character’s estranged daughter–also a polyglot–are an essential part of Hanne’s journey in Japan.

After being shamed at the conference, the bond that Hanne formed with the protagonist of the book within the book, is something she must deal with. She thinks about Jiro and Schuyler included bits of the supposed translation. How could she have gotten it so wrong? is the question she continues to ask herself.

I enjoyed the book immensely, however, the opening pages (mostly chapter one) could have used a bit more ironing out. It was a bit too heavy with Hanne’s translation fragments to really grip onto, but once I moved on from this, I felt safe in the hands of Schuyler. Also, I refuse to give the ending away, but here I also found myself trying to grasp onto the novel. What had preceded the ending was so marvelous, I thought the end odd. It was definitely an answer to all of the questions raised earlier and it made sense. Yet, I felt pulled out of the story. It did not leave me hanging, it did not leave me wanting more, it just left me wanting something else. Regardless, though, I enthusiastically recommend The Translator. It won’t take long to read and it will be a pleasure for both translators and lovers of literature alike. I particularly liked Hanne’s observations of translation,

She has found no other way to be in the world, only the movement of words from one language to another. She knows most people don’t even think about translation, and when they bother to, they don’t assign it much value: a mechanical process, substituting one word for another, a monkey could do it; worse, a computer. She’s tired of defending it, of explaining that even though she’s tethered to an already-assembled drama, her role is akin to being an author.

The Shadow of the Wind | Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Do not ask me how I came across this book; all I remember is reading the description and thinking how intriguing it sounded. Which, once you read the book (or this little write-up), the mysterious origins of its way into my life seems entirely fitting.

The 2001 novel by Spanish author, Carlos Ruiz Zafón, is exquisitely translated by Lucia Graves. The prose is fluid and elegant without being flashy, and I was sucked into the story right away.

The novel moves around in time and space but is mostly rooted in Barcelona over the first half of the Twentieth Century. A young boy, Daniel, is taken by his father to the secret Cemetery of Forgotten Books.

[T]his place, books no longer remembered by anyone, books that are lost in time, live forever, waiting for the day when they will reach a new reader’s hands.

Daniel is allowed to choose one book of his own. He finds The Shadow of the Wind written by Julián Carax. When he inquires about the author himself, Daniel soon becomes dragged into a mystery that finds its origins thirty years earlier in the 1910s. Also, while he is poking around in Barcelona’s community to find more answers, the dastardly Laín Coubert, “the man without a face,” is desperately after Daniel’s copy which he has full intention of destroying which he has done to all of Carax’s previous copies.

Like a good cover blurb, this book is filled with death, murder, mystery, corruption, yada yada. Because Zafón was masterfull at wrapping a good story together, I couldn’t help but think back to my own book that I have been working on FOREVER. The Shadow of the Wind winds itself around different characters, different decades, and at times, different perspectives. In an expertly manner, the author divulges information or holds it close to his chest to not reveal too much right away. I recommend this to everyone but especially people who are working on their own project that might becoming a massive, out-of-hand endeavor.

The characteristic that stuck out to me the most was the plotting. The prose was beautiful and Zafón’s plotting really made this book a delight. What really stood prominent was when to hold back information and when to release it. This led to a natural feeling of “detective” on the part of the reader. We have Daniel who is also looking for clues and is acting as our surrogate.

Finally! This is the first book for The [International] Reading List.

Reading & Chatting at the Bridge Series

bridgeYesterday was all rain and chill in New York City. So what better way to spend a damp evening than to go to The Bridge Series event hosted by Goethe Insitut. The Bridge Series “is the first independent reading and discussion series in New York City devoted to literary translation.”

I was pleasantly surprise. I can be a tough critique when it comes to readings (meaning, normally they are incredibly boring). But these translators chose mighty fine selections and their discussion after the reading was quite interesting. The translators included Ross Benjamin, Isabel Fargo Cole, Tess Lewis, and Tim Mohr. All four are working from German to English.

The standout of this whole event was how exciting all of the selections were. If they are not already released, the novels will be available very soon this year in the US (the UK already has some available in translation). Also, for any Kafka aficionados out there, Ross Benjamin is currently working on a translation of Kafka’s complete Diaries.

There were two questions that most peaked my interest. The first being, what happens if the author includes a blatant error in the original. An example given was an author writing about New York City had listed Gansevoort Street as being down near the World Trade Center (when in reality, it is over west in the Meatpacking District). The original author did this because he liked the sound of the name. It was convenient that he is a contemporary author because the translator was able to discuss this point with him and it was subsequently corrected in the translation. But whether or not such a mistake should be corrected was discussed further with one of the most notorious errors: Frank Kafka putting a sword in the hand of the Statue of Liberty in his work, Amerika. 

The second question was about how contemporary German literature (and foreign lit as a whole) has changed recently and how does that apply to translating. The translators hit upon the fact that many references are no longer solely Germany/Austria/Switzerland based. They also incorporate many North American trends and concepts. The translators didn’t weigh on whether they thought this was a good or bad thing but they did note that they didn’t have to look up as many culture reference anymore.

All in all, I was delighted to go to last night’s Bridge Series. I recommend it. Not only do they cover German literature but other languages as well. You can visit their website for more information.

Emerging German playwright, Juliane Stadelmann talks writing, theatre, and jet skis

Not only is Juliane Stadelmann a talented emerging playwright, she is [I hope!] the first  in a line of interviews on Acid Free Pulp. I wanted to showcase her talent and get her perspective on writing and publishing outside of the US.

Juliane is originally from Salzwedel, Germany. She has studied as an actor, worked as a surf instructor in Hawaii and France, and co-edited Tippgemeinschaft 2013. This past year she worked in collaboration with an American playwright to translate and stage dramatic readings of both of their plays in New York City. She currently studies writing at Deutsches Literturinstitut Leipzig and was awarded a place this year in the Stuck für Stuck program at Schauspielhaus in Vienna.

js1How did you make the leap from actor to playwright?

It was not really a leap I think. I’ve been playwriting even before I started acting and going to drama school in Berlin. It was more a thing of changing priorities. After drama school, I felt like I loved being on stage but at the same time I realized working as an actress cuts my personal freedom in a really weird way. From psycho group processes in a company over weird castings to how the fuck am I gonna earn money with that?? So I decided to focus on writing and applied at the Deutsches Literaturinstitut Leipzig. I got in and finally had the space and flexibility I needed to be creative and happy but still theatrical.

You recently were involved in a translation project with an American playwright. I know this was the first time you had your work translated. How was the process? Were there aspects you expected or didn’t?

The technical process was getting in touch with each other by a workshop in Leipzig lead by the translator, Uljana Wolf, and then work on our translations over the winter and present the work in New York in April where we had another great workshop with the distinguished Walser-translator Susan Bernofsky. The process on a personal level was quite unusual I think: I met my translation partner here in Germany personally which has been a quite luxurious situation because usually you are not interacting with your translator on that personal level I guess. Still it was hard for me to give my text away to him. (Maybe, especially because I got to know him.) It was harder than giving it to a theatre (because that’s what naturally happens with dramatic texts). Maybe because I was afraid he’d change too much by putting it into English. While our annotations went back and forth via email I was thinking all the time: Hopefully he understands what it all MEANS! Like literally. I know I shouldn’t have but that’s the truth. Putting text on stage is an act of translation, too, but it allows room for interpretation whereas putting a text into a different language might change it completely. You really have to trust your translator. I had to learn that.

But also I appreciated the things I learned about my own language. And it’s true what [another collaborator] said in one of our presentations: You don’t have to be fluent in the language you are translating but you have to be perfect in your own language. And there is something really true about it. You sometimes touch the border of almost untranslatable phrases…that’s where it becomes really interesting not only as a translator but as a writer.

You’ve been involved with prestigious awards and workshops in Vienna and Graz recently. What have these experiences been like?

For me it has been great. I know that other writers feel different about it, but I think I have a very competitive character. I would trying being an athlete if I wasn’t trying to become an author. And if I was 15 pounds lighter, of course. But that’s a different issue. I like this mixture of competition and creative gathering, because usually those drama awards go hand in hand with some workshops before. So it’s not just about winning. You come together with other authors, in groups of maybe 4 to 6 and some mentors (dramaturges, directors, theatre heads, writers – anyone who is already successfully making a living with words or theatre work) and you read and discuss your text. Sometimes, as in Graz, you even get a director and actors to try some first rehearsals and stage concepts. So it’s a great chance to really work with your words! Critiques in those workshops are often sharper and maybe more honest than in the seminar-situation of my writing class in Leipzig, beause we don`t know each other that well and we all want to have “the best play in the universe” to MAYBE win the award at the end. I really enjoy it though it can be frustrating sometimes of course. You are compared to each other all the time and influenced by the critical words of the jury maybe more than by your own ideas. But that’s something you have to learn to deal with in general.

Although, Austria and Germany share, to an extent, the same language and certain historical and cultural points, are you finding any differences in the theatre world between the two countries?

That’s a hard question. I guess a real theatre-reviewer could write a whole essay about that issue. I can only say that theatre in the German speaking world is diverse in general. Even from Hamburg to Leipzig you’ll find different theatres with different concepts and a different approach to scenic work. That’s the nice thing about theater and playwriting: take one sentence out of a play and every group of a director and some actors will create something different out of it. Besides this, the ensemble-system exists in both of the countries which still is something really “old-school” that other European countries don’t have anymore in that strong of a way. I think tradition still plays a big role in German theatres on stage and also behind the scenes–in some more, in some less. But the hierarchies inside the business are strong and it’sworth being reformed in Germany and Austria. But that’s my personal point of view.

What is the German literary world like? How is it for young, emerging writers and what is the process?

That’s another question which is hard to answer. A common and popular way to get some attention is to win some “Literaturpreis” (literature prize) given away by some publishing house, TV stations or magazines. You apply and you can be awarded with some cash and maybe some publishing deals but there’s no guarantee to be successful after it. Also many young writers think the way those awards are given away are cheesy and you have to write “commercially” to be successful in this game. I’d love to know how you write commercially though…I’d be ruling the world with my books then! But I guess everyone has to decide which game to play. I like having those workshops around any award or prize because whatever you win or don`t win, you can always get some work done with those people and you have a well crafted text after that process. But not all the prizes go with workshops. Some are just pure gambling: Win or loose. I never took part in one of those.

Another way is residencies given away by German cities or states (Bundesländer). They usually go with a free apartment for some months and a little grant. So you have a chance to focus on your work for a couple of months. But usually those are given away to people who already have had some little success or at least got printed somewhere.

And then you can of course just do your own thing. Publish your stuff by yourself and try to keep it underground and individual. There are good possibilities to get support for those projects, at least here in Saxony where I live right now. It’s a lot of organizing and paperwork but you are free do make your own decisions and you also get to know other people publishing.

In general, I guess in the literary world it’s still more complicated to get one’s foot into the door than into the playwright world, because I feel like the general need for good young plays right now is bigger than the need for another novel. But I don’t have figures to proof that. It’s just a feeling.

Jet ski or 100 bottles wine? Which is a better prize?

Are you kidding me?? Every author should win a JETSKI! We would all be better writers and human beings, I`m sure. And I could finally work on my big-wave-career because from a certain wave size on you need a jetski that pulls you into the wave as your human paddle-arms are not able to speed up the way a jetski does. You have to be as fast as the wave to be able to catch it. That’s what I’m talking about!

Acid Free Roundup

I’ve been pulled in a few too many directions as of late but I thought I would lay out what’s been happening recently and some of my to-do’s.

  1. New poem up at Translations of Dead German Poets.
  2. NO MORE BOOK REVIEWS! I swear this time. They take up too much of my free brain space. No more (well, at least not in the foreseeable future). A published book review really takes a lot of time. You have an initial draft, edits/back and forth with an editor, and also the time it took to read the book. My desire for my own writing and book choices certainly outranks that of publishing a measly review. Only books I have chosen for myself so be prepared for more write-ups for fiction coming soon
  3. Playing catch up on my favorite blogs. I’ve been a bit quiet lately. I’m not a big fan of the way that WordPress organizes the blogs I follow; plus I am sometimes negligent in pressing the ‘Follow’ button. I’ve always used Google Reader but now with its demise, I must find something new to organize everything. Suggestions greatly appreciated.
  4. Things I’m happy with: Writing! Yes, I’ve finally gotten some more words down on the page for a book I’m writing. This plot is a bit twisty, so may I share my new favorite virtual corkboard that helps me stay organized and it’s free? Definitely recommended. www.stixy.com/
  5. Even with all of this mind-stretching-in-different-directions, I still try to put up a few interesting writerly, bookish things on the ole Twitter feed even if I can’t get to the blog. www.twitter.com/AcidFreePulp

Translating Dead German Poets

Translations of Dead German Poets.So what happens when you’ve been super busy, not responding to emails, getting back to people or being a suitable human? Procrastinate, of course. I’ve decided to collect my three previous translations I’ve posted to this blog and create a new project. I have already put up the originally three and some new ones are coming soon.

Some people squish stress balls in their hands, others clean their whole home. I choose to translate poems by dead and forgotten (at least, forgotten in the US) German-language poets to refocus and forget about everyday stresses. So without further ado…

TRANSLATIONS OF DEAD GERMAN POETS