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Lotte Kramer: New and Collected Poems

Lotte Kramer: New and Collected Poems

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Lotte Kramer has been described as a ‘Holocaust poet’ and it is true that she writes feelingly about the family and friends she left behind when she came to Britain in 1939 in the Kindertransport. But her canvas is much broader: she writes about the landscapes of modern Europe, about the Fen Country where she now lives and about paintings and literature. Her poems have been translated and published in Germany and Japan, and she herself is a notable translator of German poems, particularly Rilke.

Her New and Collected Poems contains all her translations as well as her own poetry from fourteen collections, most recently Turning the Key (Rockingham Press, 2009).

“Her poems appear simple, but their lucidity is that of deep, unmuddied waters.” Anne Stevenson

“The core of Kramer’s work could genuinely be described as Holocaust poetry, a silent watercolour Kaddish, one made in England out of such post-war materials as were available at the time.”
George Szirtes

"The power of Kramer's most moving poems lies partly in their obliquity, their resonant silences opening into spaces of irony, compassion or terror. 'A Glass of Water' calls to mind the unknowable thirst, heat and stench suffered by the Jews in the cattle-trucks, thinking of which the poet finds herself unable to lift the glass and drink."
Janet Montefiore, Times Literary Supplement

"Kramer came to this country as a Jewish child refugee in 1939. Not surprisingly, her tragic theme of loss, and the barbarism that continues to haunt 20th century politics, is returned to again and again. At her considerable best she takes us deep into the sleep of reason, where 'men are so willing / To diminish each other like stones'."
William Scammell, The Independent on Sunday

"I know that sometimes it is easier to die than to remember and I am grateful for Lotte Kramer's precise, passionate poems that refuse to do less than look for the light here, now and in the darkest places of her memory."
Gillian Allnutt, Poetry Review