Maxine Chernoff and I are excited that our Hölderlin translation is now in print and available at bookstores, Amazon.com, and the Omnidawn site, www.omnidawn.com. The first publication event last night at Moe's in Berkeley was a success, and it was great also to hear the work of Lyn Hejinian, Hank Lazer, and Tyrone Williams. The next reading is on October 29, 7:30 p.m., at Xavier Hall & Fromm Hall of University of San Francisco, 2130 Fulton Street. This event will entirely feature our translations, so we will present work from each stage of the poet's career: early odes, later odes, elegies and hymns, fragments of hymns, plans and fragments, the last poems, which he often signed as Scardanelli and assigned dates such as 1648 (long before he was born) and 1849 (six years after his death), and the great prose poem of uncertain origin, "In Lovely Blue."
The magnificent photo above, by David Maisel, Mining Project: Butte, Montana, 100, is the basis of our book's cover design. We are grateful for its use. The image is of sunlight and clouds reflected in the metallic water of a quarry.
Our sincere apologies to Jeffrey Robinson for failing to name him, in the book's acknowledgments, as co-editor, with Jerome Rothenberg, of the forthcoming Poems for the Millennium III: The California Book of Romantic and Post-Romantic Poetry, in which our translation of Hölderlin's "In the Forest" appears. We are honored to be associated with that volume, which from Lyn's report is a magnificent presentation of Romantic poetry from across the cultures and generations. More than 900 pages in length, it will be published in January of 2009.
[Plans and Fragments 12]
Often I desire to travel as the speed of the sun, in its wide arc,
from its rising to its setting, often in song
to follow ancient nature in its perfect course,
And, as the general wears an eagle on his helmet in war and
Triumph, so I wish that the sun would carry me,
How mighty the longing of mortals.
But a god lives in men, so they can see what has passed
And what is to come, and, as the mountain stream wanders to its
Source through time, from the silent
Book of deeds through which he knows his past
-----the sun's golden plunder