ReadySteadyBlog

One of my Books of the Week this week is Antony Hasler's translation of Georg Heym's Poems (Libris). Heym (1887-1912), who died tragically young, has always been in the shadow of Georg Trakl, who was born in the same year as him. Whilst understandable, this is a real pity. Michael Hofmann has called Heym an "authentic prodigy" (when he reviewed this very volume) and Rilke praised him privately. Hofmann argues, "of the German expressionists (Benn, Trakl, Van Hoddis, Stadler and others) - the modern generation that arrived just before the first world war, whose equivalent in England I suppose would be the imagists - Heym is much the most literary and, on the surface, the most conventional." This, you'll note, does nothing to lesser the pleasure of reading him. For more on Heym, Patrick Bridgwater's Poet of Expressionist Berlin: Life and Work of Georg Heym (from the wonderful Libris, who also publish Heym's The Thief and Other Stories) is your best place to start.

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