Goethe viewed the writing of poetry as essentially autobiographical, and the works selected in this volume represent more than sixty years in the life of the poet. In early poems such as “Prometheus,” he rails against religion in an almost ecstatic fervor, while “To the Moon” is an enigmatic meditation on the end of a love affair. The Roman Elegies show Goethe’s use of Classical meters in an homage to ancient Rome and its poets, and “The Diary,” suppressed for more than a century, is a narrative poem whose eroticism is combined with its morality. In selections from Faust, arguably his greatest and most personal work, Goethe creates an exhilarating depiction of humankind’s eternal search for truth.
- Dual-language edition
- David Luke’s exquisite verse translations are arranged chronologically
- Includes an introduction and notes that place the poems in the context of the poet’s life and times, as well as indexes of German and English titles and first lines