Figures of Speech HOME

Home

2018

2017

Scrapbook 12

Windsors

What is time?

Heinrich Böll

UK Strategic goals

Martin Schulz

Swiss Brexit

Brexit

Ocean plastic

Solar in December

One sauce

Saint Lucy

Saint Barbara

RWE

Scrapbook 11

Richard North

Normals

Steinmeier

COP23

Germans

Propertius

Mr Climate

Sheer uselessness

Discussion group

Edward Evans

The month 10

Scrapbook 10

The Airsoft menace

The 'Unfinished'

Edward Evans

Mrs Pericles

The month 09

Scrapbook 09

NHS

Luddites

AfD

Bundestagswahl

Still on your own

Theresa in Florence

Goethe's Gotthard [3]

The month 08

Scrapbook 08

Moral money

Gratitude

Rupert Brooke

Ernest Dowson

The Gotthard

The month 07

Scrapbook 07

Stephen Hawking

Mr Climate

Winston's paintmaker

The German connection

Tom Bombadil

The month 06

Scrapbook 06

Herd management

Happiness

Austrian Economics

Ransomware

UK sovereignty

Maria Theresia

Churchill, the film

Swinglish

Heidenröslein

Scrapbook 05

WannaCry

French

Swiss energy

Schubart in prison [10]

Greatest Hits

Scrapbook 04

Stolberg

Johann Senn [7]

Kant 23.04.1787

Scrapbook 03

On your own

Lessing's loss

Lenin's journey

Educating Schubert

The month 02

Scrapbook 02

Wind in the Willows

Schubert mugshots

In proportion

Finding Trumpy

Alistair Cooke

The media

The month 01

Scrapbook 01

Discussion group

Bedlam

Goethe's fear

Climate scientists

Pie-in-the-sky charts

We'll do it our way

Franz Peter's family

Charlie

Blacking up

Anthem

The fact era

2016

2015


Updated content

Contents list

Site search

Blogroll

About


Schubert collection

Home | 2017

Quote and image of the month 01.2017

Quote of the month

Wilhelm Busch: [ Sahst du das wunderbare Bild von Brouwer? ]

Have you seen that wonderous painting by Brouwer?
It pulls you in, just like a magnet.
You smile, but a shudder of horror
Goes down your spine.

A calm doctor opens an abscess
at the back of a man's neck;
A woman with a jug stands alongside
absorbed in the misfortune.

Yes, old friend, we all have our abscess,
usually behind us. And calmly
Someone else has to burst it. The pus flows,
And strangers watch.


Sahst du das wunderbare Bild von Brouwer?
Es zieht dich an, wie ein Magnet.
Du lächelst wohl, derweil ein Schreckensschauer
Durch deine Wirbelsäule geht.

Ein kühler Dokter öffnet einem Manne
Die Schwäre hinten im Genick;
Daneben steht ein Weib mit einer Kanne,
Vertieft in dieses Mißgeschick.

Ja, alter Freund, wir haben unsre Schwäre
Meist hinten. Und voll Seelenruh
Drückt sie ein andrer auf. Es rinnt die Zähre,
Und fremde Leute sehen zu.

Wilhelm Busch: Werke. Hist.-krit. Gesamtausgabe, Ed. Friedrich Bohne. 4 vols., Wiesbaden: Vollmer, 1968. Vol. 2, p. 515. Online at Zeno.
By the time Wilhelm Busch published his verse collection Kritik des Herzens 'Criticism of the Heart' in 1874 he had established an enormous reputation and readership as a talented illustrator and writer of jovial pieces such as Max und Moritz, Die fromme Helene, 'The pious Helene', and Fipps der Affe, 'Fipps the Monkey'. His readership never really got used to the serious Busch, who presents us here with a masterful metaphoric reading of Brouwer's painting.

Image of the month

Adriaen Brouwer (1606?-1638), 'Die Operation am Rücken', c. 1636

Adriaen Brouwer (1606?-1638), Die Operation am Rücken 'The Operation on the Back', c. 1636. Image: ©Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main