Feature > Poetry
Daniele Pantano

Daniele Pantano

Daniele Pantano is a Swiss poet, translator, critic, and editor born of Sicilian and German parentage in Langenthal (Canton of Berne). He is Reader in Poetry and Literary Translation at Edge Hill University, England.

Winter Twilight (English Translation)

To Max von Esterle
Black skies of metal.
Criss-cross in red storms blow
Hunger mad crows at dusk
Above parks in grief and pale.

A light shaft freezes in the clouds;
And before Satan's curses
They circle and descend
Sevenfold in number.

In sweet and stale rot
Soundless their bills shear.
Houses loom from mute threats;
Brightness in the theater.

Churches, bridges and hospital
Stand ghastly in the twilight.
Blood-spattered linens billow
Sails upon the canal.

Winterdämmerung (Original German)

Schwarze Himmel von Metall.
Kreuz in roten Stürmen wehen
Abends hungertolle Krähen
Über Parken gram und fahl.

Im Gewölk erfriert ein Strahl;
Und vor Satans Flüchen drehen
Jene sich im Kreis und gehen
Nieder siebenfach an Zahl.

In Verfaultem süß und schal
Lautlos ihre Schnäbel mähen.
Häuser dräu'n aus stummen Nähen;
Helle im Theatersaal.

Kirchen, Brücken und Spital
Grauenvoll im Zwielicht stehen.
Blutbefleckte Linnen blähen
Segel sich auf dem Kanal.
Georg Trakl

Georg Trakl

Georg Trakl (1887-1914) began writing poetry at the age of 13. In 1912, Trakl's poem "Vorstadt im Föhn" was published in the Innsbruck cultural and political journal Der Brenner. All subsequent Trakl poems appeared in this journal. In 1913, Trakl's Der jüngste Tag was published. Trakl subsequently volunteered for service during World War I on the Eastern Front as a medical officer. He died following a nervous breakdown in 1914. Today, Trakl is considered one of the most important exponents of Austrian Expressionism.


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