Prayer for the Dead Bridegroom – II.

If only I knew
What was the last sight you saw.
Was it a stone, that had already drunk
So many last sights until those sights fell blindly
Onto the blind?
Or was it earth,
Enough to fill a shoe,
And already blackened
By so many partings
And so much death?

Or was it your last journey,
Bidding  you farewell from all the paths
You ever trod?

A puddle of water, a piece of mirroring metal,
Perhaps the buckle of your enemy’s belt,
Or some other small celestial
Soothsayer?

Or did this Earth
Which lets no-one depart from it unloved
Send you a bird-sign through the air,
A reminder to your soul, so that it shuddered
In your burnt, tormented body?

Gebet für den toten Bräutigam – II.

Wenn ich nur wüßte,
Worauf dein letzter Blick ruhte.
War es ein Stein, der schon viele letzte Blicke
Getrunken hatte, bis sie in Blindheit
Auf den Blinden fielen?

Oder war es Erde,
Genug, um einen Schuh zu füllen,
Und schon schwarz geworden
V
on soviel Abschied
Und von soviel Tod bereiten?

Oder war es dein letzter Weg,
Der dir das Lebewohl von allen Wegen brachte
Die du gegangen warst?

Eine Wasserlache, ein Stück spiegelndes Metall,
Vielleicht die Gürtelschnalle deines Feindes,
oder irgend ein anderer, kleiner Wahrsager
Des Himmels?

Oder sandte dir diese Erde,
Die keinen ungeliebt von hinnen gehen läßt,
Ein Vogelzeichen durch die Luft,
Erinnernd deine Seele, daß sie zuckte
In ihrem qualverbrannten Leib?

You can listen to this in German here.

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4 thoughts on “Prayer for the Dead Bridegroom – II.

  1. Prayer for the Dead Bridegroom – II.
    A word from the poem I thought was Important was trod. According to Merriam Webster’s Dictionary Online, trod is the past tense or past participle of tread. Also according to Merriam Webster’s Dictionary Online, tread means, “to step or walk on or over; to walk or proceed along.” A couple synonyms are March, pace, crush, squash, and stride according to theasuaras.com. Some antonyms are release, let go, and tiptoe. In the passage of tread on etymology online, part of it says, “to tread, step on, trample; traverse, pass over.”
    I think this word is important because tread means to move on in some ways. I think the poem is kind of saying the holocaust happened but we need to move on. I thought of this when I read on of the last lines, “Or did this Earth, Which lets no-one depart from it unloved Send you a bird-sign through the air, …” I think this says that even though you may hate what happened, you need to move n and love the world and your life.
    What I think the poem means is no one dies unhappy. The last two lines of the first stanza says, “By so many partings, And so much death?” This is saying that you hate the world because you’ve left your family and/or seen other people killed. Even though all of this has happened, you need to learn to move on. You can morn your friends and family that have died, but you can’t let it ruin your life and, when you do this, you will have had a successful life.

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