Dagmara Kraus in conversation with Helene Imislund
German poetry is changing. A new wave of contemporary poets are shrugging off traditional structuring in favour of impulsivity and linguistic play, to the effect of poems seeming to fall apart on the page. This is especially present in the poems of Dagmara Kraus: In her poems, she toys with German-language oddities, unusual words and reluctant phrases, and the result is poetry that must be listened to and tasted as well as read.
“I use whatever I can find”, Kraus has said about her method. A pleasant-sounding word, a commanding street sign, snippets of other works and the names of streets and towns – Kraus picks it all up. With frequent additions of French, Polish and English, along with an entire collection devoted to invented languages, Kraus shows off a new trend in German poetry.
Dagmara Kraus (born 1981) is a German-Polish poet and translator, based in France, with eight collections to her name. She debuted with kummerang in 2012, and has since then published a host of books as poet and translator. In 2018 she received the Basler award for her poetry.
Kraus will meet Helene Imislund, author of the poetry collection Spredte døtre (“Scattered Daughters”) and the short story collection Alle tings kjerne (“Center of All Things”) to a conversation about contemporary German poetry and languages’ constant ability to surprise and confuse us.
The conversation will be in English.
Kraus’s visit comes as part of “Literature Beyond Borders”, a collaborative project between literature houses in Oslo (Litteraturhuset), Berlin (FCB), Istanbul (Kıraathane) and Diyarbakir (Wêjegeh Amed).