Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Anniversaries. The Berlin Wall, of which my uncle once brought my family a small chunk; and this time last year I first read Georg Trakl. A friend told me his name was pronounce "gay-org."

My Heart at Evening

by Georg Trakl

Toward evening you hear the cry of the bats.
Two black horses bound in the pasture,
The red maple rustles,
The walker along the road sees ahead the small
Nuts and young wine taste delicious,
Delicious: to stagger drunk into the darkening woods.
Village bells, painful to hear, echo through the black
fir branches,
Dew forms on the face.

From 20 Trakl translations by Robert Bly and James Wright,

This version of The Heart... differs greatly from the Daniel Slimko version. The rhythm, the breaks. Over the editor of the Liliput Review talks about Trakl's influence on Wright.

I Was Afraid of Dying

I was afraid of dying
In a field of dry weeds.
But now,
All day long I have been walking among damp fields,
Trying to keep still, listening
To insects that move patiently.
Perhaps they are sampling the fresh dew that gathers slowly
In empty snail shells
And in the secret shelters of sparrow feathers fallen on the
James Wright

I bought this book to be sure

If you're not like me, you can view all of James Wright's collected poems here.

1 comment:

Courtney said...

I remember hearing the name "Georg" in The Sound of Music and thinking it was the most wonderul name in the whole wide world.