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Rainer Maria Rilke, The Duino Elegies
(W. W. Norton, 1978, reissued 1992 & 2006)

There are many translations of this modernist masterpiece. David Young’s, which has sold steadily for almost thirty years, traveling mainly by word of mouth, is distinctively contemporary and American, cast as it is in William Carlos Williams’ late triadic line and “variable foot.”

Rainer Maria Rilke, Sonnets to Orpheus
(Wesleyan University Press, 1987)

“An artful and sensitive translation of this most elusive of Rilke’s poetry.… The thing that Rilke made is once again alive to us, all of it.... Young has subtracted...the most persistent problem with other translation: he does not let the music of the form haunt the poem. There is no rhetorical ‘rounding-out,’ in either phrase of line: no, in Pound’s fine phrase, emotional slither. The reader feels that Young has successfully ‘inhabited’ the form, found a correlative language.”
Stanley Plumly

Rainer Maria Rilke, The Book of Fresh Beginnings
(Oberlin College Press, 1994)

Günter Eich, Valuable Nail: Selected Poems
Translated with Stuart Friebert and David Walker
(Oberlin College Press, 1981)

Other projects: David Young has translated, but not published, three volumes by Paul Celan, and is currently working on a selection of poems by Friedrich Hölderlin.

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