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daghani-selma-76

A guest post by flowerville, blog at fortlaufen.blogspot.com and twitter @rootprints. Image by Arnold Daghani.

Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger, a niece of Paul Celan, was born in 1924 in Czernowicz and died at age 18 of typhus in the Mikhailovska labor camp. Fifty-seven poems survived in a notebook that she called “Blütenlese” (Harvest of Blossoms).  

This is the last poem in her notebook:

selma tragik

Tragedy:
Dec. 23, 1941 
This is the hardest: to give yourself 
and know that you are unwanted, 
to give yourself fully and to think 
that you vanish like smoke into the void. 

(translation by Pearl Fichman)

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Via The Paris Review’s Tumblr. (Click to read more; it’s worthwhile.)