Regarding the Shadows

Regarding the Shadows

158 pages
Genre: Literature, Fiction, Poetry
We follow a fox through the twilight of the world. We are hanging in the rock. The hook that holds us is rusty red. A mammoth closes its eyes, the cage door is open, and the angels are afraid. "They fly / and fall, fly / and fall, / crashing / inevitably / again and again / onto the ice." Levin Westermann's poems interrogate grief, moving through spaces where seas rise and coasts disappear, memory blurs. "I have / no name, have no voice, have only to do / what I am told." A sarcophagus lowers on the house of Admetos and who now bears the blame? For loss is always followed by: guilt. What could have been? And what came before the fall? "you lay your hands / flat on the table. / you sit / very still and slowly / it gets light."


Swiss Literature Prize 2021
German title: bezüglich der schatten
ISBN: 978-3-95757-781-8
Publisher: Matthes & Seitz Berlin
Publication date: 2019
Series: Dichtung

Sample translation

German pdf available
Levin Westermann, born in Meerbusch in 1980, studied at the Bern University of the Arts and lives as a freelance writer in Biel. In 2020 he was awarded the prestigious Clemens Brentano Prize of the city of Heidelberg. For his poetry collection bezüglich der schatten he received the Swiss Literature Prize 2021.

By the same author(s)

"In this world of decay, flickering with images of the end times, fiction, everyday memoir, and dream image constantly trade places. The incursion of the fantastic overgrows the experience of reality, surreal and grotesque images create a pathos of doom."
- Michael Braun, Neue Zürcher Zeitung

"Hypnotic reading, deeply sad and yet uplifting, because loss is given a poetic place."
- Barbara Weitzel, Die Welt

"'bezüglich der schatten' is a journey without detours into the apocalypse. Powerful in language, Levin Westermann describes the world in dissolution, doomed. [... It] is an extremely successful, gloomy masterpiece. But don't worry: the state of the world holds no real cause for concern - it's all fiction."
- Michael Ehlers, WDR5

"[A] text of great richness and scope [...], clearly focused, related to all kinds of discourses, and yet written with simple, almost everyday means."
- Stefan Schmitzer, Fixpoetry

"Levin Westermann's poems move metaphorically through spaces where seas rise, coasts disappear, and where memories blur. Visionary as well as notes from everyday life intermingle with surreal images in four cycles, supported by typography that also makes the texts visually resonate."
- Ingrid Isermann, Literature & Art

"Westermann manages to convey in a captivating way the violence, the potential threat of our time linguistically with high suggestion. With 'bezüglich der schatten' he has succeeded in creating a small masterpiece over large parts of the volume."
- Tom Schulz, Luxemburger Tagblatt