by Mary de Rachewiltz

(Brunnenburg, April 30, 2014)


rsz eva young

Eva Hesse is Kulchur,
her background is History.

She is a great Lady.
What more can be said? 



She was kind to the prisoner, sent him chocolates and marzipan and a shawl to cover his shoulders - he wore it like Saladin, the scarf in his cimier. And she sent him a picture of her beautiful self in a bikini. Pound knew her forthwith and told me to invite her to Brunnenburg, as ever concerned about my (lack of) education. She and her husband, Mike O'Donnell, entered their name in our guest book on September 9, 1956, specifying: “of the tribe of Ez”.

Following the family profession, Eva speaks in tongues  - Vom Zungenreden in der  Lyrik : “Grossvater war ein Dragoman” - a  born translator. Pound speaks of  “Sophoclean Light,” Eva speaks of the “physischen Frisson” of poetry. In his youth Pound read Heine and Walter von der Vogelweide.

As for history: “Eva's pa heard that on the telephone” and wrote Das Spiel um Deutschland. Before WWII Pound read Frobenius, my first assignment had been “Das Bauerntum in Africa,” a chapter in Erlebte Erdteile.  In captivity, Pound studied Law Codes and History.  He read and carefully annotated the 3 volumes of Bernhard von Bülow, Denkwürdigkeiten and must have enjoyed the facsimiles: ”Quis erudiet without documents?” And von Papen's Memoirs. And, yes, for my education, he sent me his annotated Shadows Lengthen by Clara Longworth de Chambrun, as well as Wong Su-Ling, Daughter of Confucius.

Eva is generous, she cultivates friendship, sharing her knowledge, her enthusiasms, sometimes even royalties. I owe her E. E. Cummings, Robinson Jeffers, Marianne Moore and many a silk blouse. She took me to Berlin for the performance of her translation of Sophocles-Pound, Women of Trachis. It was my first flight.

She also held my hand, swimming under water in Mliet.  I saw new colors in the domain of fishes.

Also thanks to Eva, the Poet had his moment of glory on the stage. The Mayor of Darmstadt invited him as guest of honor to the premiere of Die Frauen von Trachis. He joined the actors at the end and received a standing ovation: what SPLENDOR.


What counts is the statement in Canto LXXIV: 

                           that free speech  without free radio speech is as zero

in Eva's version      dass Redefreiheit ohne Radiofreiheit  gleich null ist

and in  Canto CII:  Eva has improved that line  about  Freiheit.


It coheres all right.