Thursday, June 28, 2012
Pajari Räsänen on Celan and "Todtnauberg".
When writing the poem with the names of the healing plants and the allusion to “drinking the waters” for which the surroundings of Todtnauberg are famous (“Arnika, Augentrost, der Trunk/ aus dem Brunnen”), Celan may or may not have know that Heidegger had actually suggested, in a letter to Gerhart Baumann, that it might be “wholesome” for Celan to visit the Black Forest. Actually Celan and Heidegger met face to face the second time the following June in Freiburg. This time, as the weather was more favorable, the poet’s hope for a walk on the highland moor was realized. They met a third time, too, in March 1970, and Heidegger would have wanted to take the poet to see the Hölderlinian landscape of the Danube valley the next summer, arguing again that it would be beneficial for the poet who had suffered from serious mental trouble. They never met again, however. Celan drowned himself in the river Seine in April 1970, more or less a month after they met the third and last time.
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