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The Ravens

The Ravens

One of my most beautiful memories.

I was finally back in the mountains, on the dusty paths I loved so much. Soon I was sideways through the undergrowth, climbed along a dry brook bed and finally came to an untouched snow surface that lasted the summer up here.

Just as I was about to enter it, it was rushing over me. There were two ravens , tightly embraced, almost striped me, turned around, ascended and dropped again, into each other hooked and around itself spinning.

Once, twice, again and again.

 

To this day I do not know whether I witnessed a fight to the death or a primeval love play.

But my heart sang with joy, because it was still alive then, and since that day I love the ravens.

 

Today I’m rarely in the mountains. The dusty streets still call me, but it is becoming easier to silence their voices every time.

Only sometimes do I go to zoos and look at the black birds, look into their dark eyes and wait for my heart to beat.

But there is nothing more.

I only see tired animals, squeezed into their cage, and my reflection in their eyes.

Staring. Extradited. All of us.

On both sides of the cage.

Maybe that’s why I think I’m her brother?

 

And every time I see the ravens, I think of Rimbaud.

 

„ …

Then let from all clouds

The ravens burst, these delicious beasts!

rapturous division of razor-sharp cries,

frosty winds attack your nests!

… “

 

I know almost nothing about him.

Neither do I know about the ravens.

But both of them, with their black eyes full of suffering, seem to look deeper into being human than the rest of us.

 

And they both gave me the same gift.

Some days I long for wisdom. I want to suck away the marrow of life, to take all the knowledge and love of the world and never sleep again.

But sometimes I just want to indulge my dreams. I don’t want to complain with books, not learn anything about the world and all its suffering, but simply be thrown deeper into me by others out of me.

 

And both of them give me that, this stepping out of me and an astonished falling into my very own self.

 

Rimbaud speaks of autumn, which I love so much, of dying, of the transience of life. And of the ravens who know all about it.

 

„ …

Du, entlang der gelben Flüsse,

über die Wege des verblassten Golgotha

über Gräben, über Gruben.

Ausbreiten, sich zusammenreißen!

Tausende, über den Feldern Frankreichs,

wo die Toten von vorgestern schlafen,

… “

 

And inside me rise long forgotten images. Memories, delusions, faces and horrors.

Rimbaud is more than just a poet. He is an original creator who creates a world before us.

He reminds us of the battlefields of France, of all the young men who had to die for the cold dreams of the ancients.

It reminds us of all the battles we human beings have to fight. To the battlefields within us, within me, to my torn soul with all its struggles.

 

It reminds me of a young woman with whom I could not live, and of all the suffering, anger and despair of that time.

To a friend who could not hold me and to his tears.

To all the agony, the fear and emptiness.

And my loneliness.

 

He reminds me of the bitter cold of my winter, which is lonely like the kiss of a loveless woman and of the ways we stumble alone, towards our goal.

 

And all this reminds me of Rimbaud himself, my better self. The one who rejected his art, who preferred to hunt for big animals, until he finally, young and broken, died in his mother’s hut.

A symbol of all those who failed in their lives.

 

And they remind me again and again of the ravens. To the ravens I once saw.

They remember death. They remember the fight, to the love play, to the end.

 

And despite the winter, despite the ice and cold in which we live, it reminds us of the hope that can blossom everywhere, even in places where we would never suspect it.

Hope in every encouraging word, in every friendly gesture.

Hope, also for us who are lying on the ground.

Perhaps just for us.

 

„…

But saints of the air, in oak crowns.

– lost mast on a magical evening –

Leave the wrens in May to them,

gagged at the bottom of the forest.

into the grass

without a chance of escape

in bottomless defeat.”

 

By clicking on this picture you can order the book directly at Amazon. There are no further costs for you, but I get a small commission.

 

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Foreword

Hermann Hesse

Hermann Hesse, the misunderstood dreamer, who always started a new journey.

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