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Kaspar Is Dead Analysis

Author: poem of Hans Arp Type: poem Views: 6

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alas our good kaspar is dead.

  who will bury a burning flag in the wings of the clouds who will pull

  black wool over our eyes day by day.

  who will turn the coffee mills in the primal barrel.

  who will lure the idyllic roe from his petrified paperbag.

  who will sneeze oceanliners unbrellas windudders beekeepers spindles

  of ozone who will pick clean the pyramids' bones.

  alas alas alas our good kaspar is dead. holy saint bong kaspar is dead.

  the clappers raise heart-rending echoes of sorrow in the barns of the bells

  when we murmur his name. therefore i will only sigh out his surname

  kaspar kaspar kaspar.

  why hast thou forsaken us. in what shape has thy lovely great soul taken

  flight. hast thou changed to a star or a chain made of water in a tropical

  whirlwind or a teat of black light or a transparent brick in a drum that

  howls for its craggy existence.

  now the soles of our feet and the crowns of our heads have dried up and

  the fairies are lying half-charred on the funeral piles.

  now the black bowling alleys thunder in back of the sun and no one is

  setting a compass or spinning the wheelbarrow's wheels.

  who will eat with the phosphorized rat on the lonely barefooted table.

  who will chase the siroccoco devil that's trying to lead off our horses.

  who will decipher the monograms scratched on the stars.

  his bust shall adorn the mantels of people ennobled by truth through it

  leaves but small comfort or snuff for his death's head.



Translation from the German by Jerome Rothenberg


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