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New Translations by Joshua Weiner

April 06, 2021 English

Josh Weiner book cover

Read the newly translated release of Flight and Metamorphosis.

Coming in Fall 2021 is the newly translated release of Flight and Metamorphosis by poet Nelly Sachs. Translated by UMD English Professor Joshua Weiner and Linda B. Parshall, the translation is forthcoming from Farrar Straus Giroux.

From Joshua Weiner:

Flight and Metamorphosis cover

The poems in this selection are all drawn from Nelly Sachs’ 1959 volume, Flucht und Verwandlung / Flight and Metamorphosis, which marks the culmination in a period of her development as a poet.

In this book-length sequence of poems, Sachs turns from speaking through the murdered of the Shoah to speaking more for herself, her own condition of being a refugee from Nazi Germany—her loneliness living in a small Stockholm flat with her elderly mother, her exile, her alienation, her feelings of romantic bereavement, her search for the divine, even as she sees with visionary power the state of continual flight and asylum-seeking as a historical, political, spiritual, and legendary experience that shapes the lives of Jews through time—although in the period before and immediately after World War II, it was no more an exclusive condition than it is now. In these poems, we hear a Nelly Sachs who is closer to us today than she was twenty or even forty years ago.

Read more about the translation.