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Another forgotten poem





Perhaps here park means nothing more than sorrow,

Perhaps here tree’s a swallowed sobbing cry,

And every leaf is clothed in melancholy,

And joy and sorrow chokes and putrefy.


Perhaps each path here leads the way to madness,

Perhaps the pond’s a deeply poured out of pain,

And every building stands eternally in darkness,

Within my walls dead heartbeats remain.


That may well all be true — but death is not

So stupid, still and silent in this world,

It screams and writhes and bleeds a lot

And nothing falls silent till it’s dead.


Only things are dead and perhaps not even these.

They, too, resist and scream their deepest pain,

Men also scream and suffer all their days

Until at last dark wreaths are woven them.


Rudolf Ditzen

from ‘Gestalten und Bilder’ (Shapes and Images), unpublished manuscript