Psalm – Paul Celan

Paul Celan, 1920-1970, poet, German language.

As is known, the poet was an expert in the poetic task of creating images like ballast to try to order and ground the experiences of life. His poetry is his translation of these images into words, often using neologisms, for which he is famous.

All the more expert for the circumstances of his life:  German-speaking, a Jew, born in a Romania which is now part of the Ukraine, and an adult when WW2 began.  His parents died in internment camp.  Paul Celan survived the labour camp to which he was sent. He took his life in 1970 at 49.

 

Many of his images are complex and hard to read because they deal with experiences which were very hard.  Here, however, is a hard-reached affirmation of life.  

I read Celan not infrequently against the fluff puff of the triple mocha cappuccinos with which we launch into our softer days.

 

******************************

Psalm

No-man kneads us again out of Earth and Loam,

 

Persephone Judith Schaecter 2015-4

Detail of Persephone, 2015, stained glass, cut, sandblasted, engraved, painted, fired and assembled with copperfoil.  Judith Schaechter, born 1961, American.

 

no-man spirits our Dust.

 

DSC00093_edited-1.jpg

M7; graphite on mat black board.  Toyun Odutola, born 1985, American, born Nigeria.  Philadelphia Art Museum

No-man.

Praise to you, No-man.
For love of you
we will flower.

 

DSC00029.JPG

Trillium, Mt. Cuba, Delaware

 

DSC09999-2

Summersweet (clethra alnifolia), fragrant, shade-loving; in the Tyler Arboretum, Media, Pennsylvania

 

 

Mountain laurel Mt. Cuba June 2015-5

 Mountain Laurel, Mt.Cuba, Delaware

 

Moving
towards you.

 

DSC09999-1

Black bugbane, Mt. Cuba, Delaware

 

Crabapple, Winterthur, May 2014-10

 Crabapple flower, Winterthur, Delaware

A Nothing
we were, we are, we shall
be still, flowering:

DSC00063_edited-1

  Italian windflower, Winterthur, Delaware

 

the Nothing-, the
No-man’s-rose.

 

NY Botanical Gardens Bronx Roses Mid-June 2015-60

Rose, Bronx, NY

 

With
our Pistil soul-bright,

 

DSC00114-1

Hibiscus, Fairmount Park, Philadelphia

our Stamen heaven-torn,

Azaleas, Winterthu-28

Azaleas worn out by rain, Winterthur, Delaware

our Corolla red

 

Roses Brooklyn Botanical Garden June 2015-096

Rose, Brooklyn, NY

 

with the Violet-Word that we sang

over, O over
the thorn.   

NY Botanical Gardens Bronx Roses Mid-June 2015-01Roses, the Bronx, New York.  

The poet’s last image is of violet which is at the end of the visible spectrum of light between visible blue and invisible ultraviolet.

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s