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Translated from the German by Elizabeth Oehlkers Wright
Published: Sun Oct 15 2000
Art: Paul TheriaultEver New (detail), 2022, acrylic and found paper on scavenged wood
At the Winter Window

Translated from the German by Elizabeth Oehlkers Wright

We waited
for the winter wren, the snow king,
not one bird
flew into the pane
The birch tree disappeared
and I bought another round
of white wine
Neighbor Glasseye said
IN THE OLD DAYS WE HAD TWO
SLEIGHS IN THE STALL
AND NOT THE
GHOST OF A HORSE
Then he roasted Subletter Steaks
on the flat-iron*
BUT IN THE LABORATORIES I SAID
NOW YOU CAN EVEN
MANUFACTURE WORMS
FROM A THOUSAND LITTLE PIECES
And so on.
Don’t ask me
what anyone else is running off
at the mouth about
At any rate no one came
by or only just
as I was away from the window

 

*wallsocket in the stairwell

 

Kito Lorenc (1938–2017) wrote in German and also in Sorbic, the language of a tiny minority in eastern Germany about which even Germans know very little. His books include Gegen den Großen Popanz (Against the Great Bogeyman, Aufbau, 1990) and Suki w zakach (Sorbic, roughly “Knots in the Pockets,” Domowina-Verlag, 1998).

Elizabeth Oehlkers Wright is a translator of contemporary German poetry and writing. Her translations have appeared in journals including AGNISlope, and Seneca Review. (2010)

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Kito Lorenc (1938–2017) wrote in German and also in Sorbic, the language of a tiny minority in eastern Germany about which even Germans know very little. His books include Gegen den Großen Popanz (Against the Great Bogeyman, Aufbau, 1990) and Suki w zakach (Sorbic, roughly “Knots in the Pockets,” Domowina-Verlag, 1998).

Elizabeth Oehlkers Wright is a translator of contemporary German poetry and writing. Her translations have appeared in journals including AGNI, Slope, and Seneca Review. (updated 7/2010)
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