Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Kito Lorenc • 4 March 1938 – 24 September 2017

A giant of a wordsmith has gone to earth. As with grain growing toward its sun — this essayist & playwright and erstwhile editor & dramaturg, foremost bi-lyrical poet & constructor of verbs, decoder & developer of expression — this complete creator of meaning has set down not a last episode, but a lasting one.

Bestowed with the legacies of Heine & Hesse and Mann & Lessing, and Petrarca, Kito Lorenc must have been a perfecter of that which Ćišinski is reputed to've found in the lyricism of their West Slavic voice, not only digging up each definition by its roots but also spinning the pots in which to replant them.

He translated his own work and was astute enough in that art to be the first to unite his inherent & acquired German & Sorbian in verse. For, as he reckoned, one was good for visits to the public authorities and philosophical musings, the other for house and garden and the walnut tree in the yard.


REDE-WENDUNGEN
Ich steh auf Messers Schneide
knietief in der Kreide
als fünftes Rad am Wagen
und will ein Schnippchen schlagen.

Auf dem Zahnfleisch krieche
ich in Teufels Küche.
Der Teufel malt mich an die Wand
und legt mir Feuer in die Hand.

Ich sauf im Sitzen Tinte,
werf Korn in meine Flinte,
streu Puder auf mein Haupt und jag
die Katze aus dem Klammersack.

Und wie’s mich juckt, so kommen
die Felle angeschwommen
mit Zähnen auf den Haaren,
die noch voll Suppe waren.

Kaum hab ich einen blassen Dunst
der Tuten- und der Blasenkunst,
da beißt die Maus den Faden ab,
der ich den Marsch geblasen hab.

from Wortland by Kito Lorenc (Leipzig Reclam 1984)