Poetry Bilingual Edtion Translated from the German by Amy Kepple Strawser In this first ever bilingual edition of VOICES FROM THE BITTER CORE Stimmen aus dem harten Kern acclaimed German poet Ursula Krechel traces the devastating repercussions of violence and warfare, from the battles of Ancient Greece to the trenches of World War I and the invasions of our current century Krechel employs a collage technique that blends ancient and modern in an inventive and astute way, mixing quotes taken from military instruction manuals and codes of conduct with the imagined perspectives of historical figures such as Byron and Philoctetes and the anonymous voices of soldiers and civilians The arbitrariness of violence is juxtaposed with the strikingly rigorous form, with each of the twelve chapters consisting of twelve twelve line poems Behind this multiplicity of speakers and techniques, the reader hears a lyrical and monumental voice that distils the essence of war VOICES FROM THE BITTER CORE is a profound and lasting memorial to the wages of human brutality


7 thoughts on “Voices from the Bitter Core

  1. Erica Erica says:

    Ambitious in scope, and stunningly executed The voices that blur together and pull apart are simultaneously sympathetic and horrific, the collage technique at once jarring and unifying This is a work of paradoxes, of dissonance and contradiction, an utterly human work In its examination of the voices of war it implicitly questions the rationale for killing, without falling into propaganda The work collapses time, moving from the Peloponnesian war to modern conflicts and the shifts jar the Ambitious in scope, and stunningly executed The voices that blur together and pull apart are simultaneously sympathetic and horrific, the collage technique at once jarring and unifying This is a work of paradoxes, of dissonance and contradiction, an utterly human work In its examination of the voices of war it implicitly questions the rationale for killing, without falling into propaganda The work collapses time, moving from the Peloponnesian war to modern conflicts and the shifts jar the reader into confronting the essential unchanging nature of violence She manages to transcend the quotidian critiques of war with the precision of her formal and self imposed structure, beneath which play strange juxtapositions, faltering and slipping syntax and experimentation with the potential of language The translation of these things leaves the system of references intact and open, rather than imposing particular meanings and readings onto them