Celan / Heidegger:
"Translation at the Mountain of Death"
by Pierre Joris

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Celan / Heidegger:
"Translation at the Mountain of Death"
by Pierre Joris


Paul Celan  (1920 – 1970) was a Romanian-born German-language poet and translator. He was born as Paul Antschel to a Jewish family in Cernăuți (German: Czernowitz), in the then Kingdom of Romania (now Chernivtsi, Ukraine), and adopted the pseudonym "Paul Celan". He became one of the major German-language poets of the post–World War II era. (Source: Wiki)

Celan / Heidegger: "Translation at the Mountain of Death" by Pierre Joris

"Todtnauberg": In Heidegger's Germany there is no room for Paul Celan. Pierre Joris' essay on his approach to the translation of Paul Celan's "Todtnauberg". University of Pennsylvania (UPENN), Electronic Poetry Center.

Online URL: http://writing.upenn.edu/epc/authors/joris/todtnauberg.html

"TODTNAUBERG"                                    TODTNAUBERG

Arnika, Augentrost, der			Arnica, eyebright, the
Trunk aus dem Brunnen mit dem	        draft from the well with the
Sternwürfel drauf,			star-die on top,

in der					in the
Hütte,					Hütte,

die in das Buch				written in the book
- wessen Namen nahms auf		- whose name did it record
vor dem meinen? -			before mine - ?
die in dies Buch				in this book
geschriebene Zeile von			the line about
einer Hoffnung, heute,			a hope, today,
auf eines Denkenden			for a thinker's
kommendes				word 
Wort						to come,
im Herzen,					in the heart,

Waldwasen, uneingeebnet,		forest sward, unleveled,
Orchis und Orchis, einzeln,		orchis and orchis, singly,

Krudes, später, im Fahren		crudeness, later, while driving,
deutlich,					clearly,

der uns fährt, der Mensch,		he who drives us, the man,
der's mit anhört,				he who also hears it,

die halb-					the half-
beschrittenen Knüppel-			trod log-
pfade im Hochmoor,			trails on the highmoor,

Feuchtes,					humidity,
viel.						much.


Pierre Joris' translations of Paul Celan include Breathturn Into Timestead, The Collected Later Poetry, A Bilingual Edition Translated and with Commentary by Pierre Joris, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014
Microliths They are, Little Stones, Contra Mundum Press, 2020

Interviews of the process of translating Celan include "Under the Language, A Conversation with Pierre Joris on Paul Celan", LARB, 20/01/2021, Online URL https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/under-the-language-a-conversation-with-pierre-joris-on-paul-celan/
Jacket2 Magazine,
The New Yorker Revisits Paul Celan at Harriet (Poetry Foundation). This essay delineates the translatory process for "Todtnauberg" and as such is germane to the process of Joris' translations of the microliths (prose fragments) that are hosted in three series on the Poethead website.


Pierre Joris


UPENN, The Electronic Poetry Center (EPC), Jacket2 Magazine, Harriet, Poetry Foundation, Poethead, Contra Mundum Press


The University of Pennsylvania, The Electronic Poetry Center




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