Thursday, September 3, 2020

Shibboleth by Paul Celan



Together with my stones

grown big with weeping

behind the bars,


they dragged me out into

the middle of the market,

that place

where the flag unfurls to which

I swore no kind of allegiance.



double flute of night:

remember the dark

twin redness

of Vienna and Madrid.


Set your flag at half-mast,


At half-mast

today and forever.



here too reveal what you are,

here, in the midst of the market.

Call the shibboleth, call it out

into your alien homeland:

February. No pasarán.



you know about the stones,

you know about the water,


I shall lead you away

to the voices

of Estremadura.


(translated by Michael Hamburger)

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