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Seasonal Time Change

Selected Poems (The Seagull Library of German Literature)

Michael Krüger, Joseph Given (Translated by), Michael Kruger


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Our twice-yearly daylight savings holiday, in which we faithfully, collectively adjust our clocks, is purely human tampering with the calendar. Yet, it is a practice that is embedded in nature’s principles, even as we exact more sunlight for ourselves in an over-organized, technological world. Mirroring this dichotomy, Michael Krüger brings us The Seasonal Time Change, a collection of poems where an exacting eye is cast on nature. The poet’s perspective is observant, stringent, and very human, bringing both intellect and emotion to the page. Translated by Joseph Given, the verses are in turn scrutinizing, wistful of the brutality of nature, and rejoicing in the simple wonder of life.

​Bearing witness to Krüger’s interactions with renowned poets and artists through his time as director of Hanser publishing house, proximity and relationships are ongoing themes in this volume. Together, the poems remind us of our own mortality and of the finiteness of nature, but also our need for celebration even—perhaps especially—in times of darkness.

Praise For Seasonal Time Change: Selected Poems (The Seagull Library of German Literature)

Seasonal Time Change: Selected Poems, Kruger’s latest book to be translated and published in English, presents almost exclusively short poems in which the beauty and iniquities of nature often mirror the unvarnished ironies of human endeavor, and is an accessible, excellent introduction to Kruger’s poetry for an American readership. Most poems in Seasonal Time Change are well under a page, precise in image, deft, witty, and wryly jaundiced in their view of the poet’s world caught between a desultory urban idyll and nature’s unsentimental image.”
— Rain Taxi

Seagull Books, 9780857422316, 128pp.

Publication Date: May 15, 2015

About the Author

Michael Krüger was the director of the Hanser Verlag from 1995 until his retirement in 2013. He has published many volumes of prose and poetry. 

Joseph Given is a Berlin-based literary translator.