Nimms nicht so schwer, kleines Ding! (German Edition)

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  1. e-book Nimms nicht so schwer, kleines Ding! (German Edition)
  2. Get e-book Nimms nicht so schwer, kleines Ding! (German Edition)
  3. An Anthology of German Literature
  4. Hans-Joachim Hespos

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Here are some impressions of what happened! Drum roll! These are the winners of our user voting: With an impressive total of 2. We would like to congratulate all five winners! A big thank you too to everyone who took the time to vote for their favourite songs!

e-book Nimms nicht so schwer, kleines Ding! (German Edition)

By choosing the youthful David as the speaker of his poem, Rilke also positions himself with respect to tradition. In this way, the poem becomes much more than merely a reworking of some verses from the Bible. It acquires the character of a programmatic utterance about the function of poetry and the nature of its genesis.

At the very moment, in other words, when Rilke — from the viewpoint of present-day criticism — is on the verge of achieving full poetic command, he is still fraught with doubts about his ability, his relation to other masters, and the complex nature of inspiration and accomplishment. Typical of French poetry in the eighteeneighties and -nineties was a mannered and sentimental style that tended to attribute human sensitivities to the things of the natural and domestic world. But while he borrows from his French predecessors the rarefied language with which he describes these things, his poems also attempt to dismantle the very aura with which such language invests them.

One characteristic of this subversive technique is his use of rhyme: unusual words, frequently German equivalents of words culled from his French reading, are matched with deflating rhyme-words more suitable to everyday speech. Similarly, when he reworks their characteristic themes and motifs, he shows both the attraction of the cult of beauty and the spiritual entrapment to which it frequently leads.

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Much of this verse is mawkish, affected, and excessively sensitive. But suddenly the blue seems to revive in one hydrangea umbel, and a flock of touching blue takes pleasure in the green. The hydrangea, with its multiple delicate blossoms held above coarse, strongly-veined leaves, ambiguously suggested the fragility of the neurasthenic coupled with taut and powerful nerves visible, as it were, beneath the skin.

In the tallest blue vase rests a wilting blue flower head. It was first introduced into Europe in the nineteenth century. The bizarre imagery of this poem clearly owes much to the proto-Surrealist outreaches of Symbolism represented by late nineteenth-century artists like Max Klinger, Odilon Redon, Gustave Moreau, and Fernand Khnopff. In the final poem of the sequence, Montesquiou tells the story of a blue hydrangea which his cousin Claude had carried with him on a crossing from Jersey: when a storm arose and threatened the passengers with shipwreck, the flower is credited with having saved Claude from a watery grave.

The painting is at once an aesthetic representation of idealised childhood and an implicit commentary on the complex relationship between nature and artifice. But in addition to this horticultural accuracy, the flower is also portrayed as if it were something artificial that has been ineptly coloured. Rilke takes the sentimental elements of eighteen-nineties aestheticism but stops short of provoking an emotional response. The faded notepaper, the washed-out apron, the shortness of life are relatively abstract.

By the end of the poem, however, it is not the colours that have disappeared from the object, but the flower that disappears behind its colour effects.

Representation is seen as necessarily inadequate, and the theory of poetic mimesis is constantly called into question. Rilke repeatedly calls attention to the fact that his images are approximations, likenesses grasped in an almost desperate attempt to render what cannot be exactly reproduced. Just as the hydrangeas mirror the sky in a distant and diluted way, so the poem presents its object only imperfectly, painfully conscious of its inevitable inexactitude.

The more the poem tries for accuracy, the farther it removes itself from the actual hydrangea. In contrast to the imagery of dried-out paints, discoloured notepaper, and the faded apron, the sudden renewal of colour in one of the flower heads represents a return to a more positive — but also a more abstract — mode.

First, it attacks the aestheticist conception of poetry as an exotic hothouse flower available only to the privileged few; second, it argues against the idea that poetry should be the expression of a fantastic and decadent imagination; and finally, the motif of renewal with which it concludes suggests that the material of eighteennineties poetry should not so much be discarded as placed in the service of a new aesthetic.

Travel guides, histories, and cultural essays about Bruges proliferated. Emerging from darkness into light, pushing face forward through a narrow space, the speaker is shocked by a rush of light and air, overwhelming and relieving at once. Everything that has seemed frightening, monstrous, and unintelligible during the climb upward suddenly falls into meaningful images once he emerges into the clear light at the top of the tower stair. The birth metaphor that underlies this poem is the expression of a desire for creative renewal. Nicolas in Furnes, or more precisely its thirteenth-century brick tower, which houses a carillon including one of the oldest bells in Belgium.

This setting, however, fails to explain a number of puzzling elements in the poem, notably the seemingly unmotivated image of a bull. The better part of the first three stanzas consists of a single sentence, as does all but a line and a half of the last three stanzas. Ill-assorted though this combination of imagery may seem, it has its own rationale. The images derive from a complex set of intertextual relations and form an implicit critique of an earlier aesthetic.

Groping his way in the darkness, the climber seems to struggle upward through a sloping tunnel formed by the slow process of trickling water. The Carillon Player is above all a novel about art. It depicts a clash between two fundamentally different aesthetics. The carillon player becomes involved in a movement designed to restore the city of Bruges to its former glory. His two loves, his wife and her sister, are daughters of an antiquarian who represents the more conservative face of the restorative movement.

Caught in this conflict, the carillon player ultimately opts for the antiquarian side of the argument. For Rilke, the debate between two factions of the aestheticist movement was still vividly alive. The self-reflexivity of the tower climb, experienced as a terrifying kind of self-enclosure, is replaced in the second half of the poem by a focus on external objects.

How are we to understand this cryptic line? The allusion, I believe, is to a bullfight. After the animal has waited there for a time, his head is uncovered and he is driven out of the toril into the bright light of the arena. Emerging from a dark tower into the blinding light is clearly an experience similar to that of the bull when his eyes are suddenly uncovered and he is released from the confines of the toril. Instead, the abyss itself seems to be hurtling down the narrow passageway of the tower staircase toward the climber like a bull about to be let out into the ring. This displacement of the toril image from the climber to the darkness that looms above him is part of the confusion of subject and object developed in this part of the poem.

Self-reflection is here portrayed as potentially destructive.

Get e-book Nimms nicht so schwer, kleines Ding! (German Edition)

Gripped by fear, he mentally transforms the looming roofbeams into the head of a bull. Known for the importance he accords to landscape at a relatively early point in the history of art, Patenier was especially skilled at depicting vast and luminous spaces. The terrain depicted is rocky, and in the background a peculiar mountain arises, cut away in the front to reveal an extraordinary complex of castles and other buildings inside; a winding road, clearly visible because of its light colour, leads towards it from the foreground.

As such, it would allow him to soar to safety like his creative predecessor Dedalus. The pathetic fallacy is still at work here. In this respect, Rilke is still very much a child of neo-Romanticism. Its multiple allusions are the trace left by his daring, but not yet fully successful attempt to enter the modern age.

Kati Kovacs & Reinhard Lakomy Nimms doch nicht so schwer 1976 Germany locked

Yet although the speaker announces his new ideals in the final stanzas, the poem itself is far from transparent. Throughout the New Poems Rilke puts the aestheticist mode into question, but never quite manages to fight free of it.

The rebirth of his poetic powers is bought at the price of constant effort. Precisely the poems he most wished to see as fresh, direct, and tied to real locations, also smack very much of the writing desk. Excessively and intricately worked, they create new obscurities in their attempt to avoid old ones. Here Rilke puts the notion of aesthetic autonomy to the test. The poem is far from self-contained, however. Mirror images like those of Fragonard no more evoke their gentle red and white than if a person speaking of his lover told you, simply, that she was still quite soft with sleep.

And if, among the greenery, they stand on pink stems turned in graceful order, together, blossoming, as in a garden border, they lure, yet more alluringly than Phryne, themselves; until the pallor of their eyes nestles and hides among their own soft down, concealed in which are black and fruit-red streaks. Suddenly through the aviary envy shrieks; but they have straightened, taken by surprise, and enter, one by one, the imagined realm.

Most studies of this relationship have seen the German poet as an admiring follower of his French predecessor. Rilke and Baudelaire use the figure of Phryne in somewhat different ways. According to classical tradition, the island of Lesbos was a training school for young prostitutes, who were also educated in various other arts, notably poetry. Sappho was one of these pupils.

The nineteenth-century Larousse encyclopaedia tells us that, owing to the large number of women concentrated on the island, it fell into disrepute for what were believed to be their shameful sexual practices. As long as Lesbos remains shut off from the outside world, mirroring itself alone, it gives off a hint of something more radiant that seems to derive from another realm.

Placing the motif of seduction at the turning-point of his sonnet, Rilke is clearly aware of the shock value of his adaptation. We expect them to seduce the spectator — but instead, they seduce themselves.

An Anthology of German Literature

Their posture wards off, and finally excludes, the spectator, as the birds first hide their eyes in their feathers and then move out into an imaginary realm. The opening sentence of the poem calls into question two different methods of representing the object, both of them somewhat forced attempts to find equivalents for it. Neither painting nor verbal expression, neither mimesis nor analogy, proves quite adequate, and the language of these lines, with its mediating comparisons, maintains a cautious distance from the modalities it invokes.

Yet as if oblivious to the impossibility of description that has now been doubly postulated, the poem proceeds to seek yet another equivalent for the flamingos. The figure now suggested is that of pink flowers blooming on a green lawn; but there is something curious about the way in which this image is presented. Pink stems are mentioned before the notion of blossoming has been introduced, and the grassy bank is elided behind a strangely abstract reference to its colour.

The entire image hesitates between the natural and the artificial, as well as between metaphor and simile.

Hans-Joachim Hespos

The disjunction between the flamingos and their observer reaches its most acute point during the moment of what the text regards as their self-seduction, ingeniously placed in an enjambement that both separates and links the octave of the sonnet and its sestet. By visualising the flamingos as pink flowers the text suggests a measure of artificiality. In this way, it implicitly criticises those proponents of artistic autonomy who, in attempting to restore the wholeness of the work of art, cut it off from outside reality.

His silent and artificially posed flamingos are far removed from the songbirds of Romanticism that identify poetic inspiration with the voice of nature itself.