What is your proudest voice

#lyrik: The happy one

When the beloved finally seems to hear him, his enthusiasm knows no bounds. But the “proudest of the beautiful” apparently preferred a quiet admirer. In any case, it is extremely sensitive to noise.

Even in the 18th century, newbies are allowed to enter the literary market with some awkwardness. But maybe this author deliberately rhymes something wooden and unclean. In any case, Isaschar Falkensohn Behr is very familiar with literary traditions and fashions. In addition, he ironically anticipated negative reviews and prejudices that would make the rounds simply because of the title. “What use is it to the bad booklet that its author is a Polnian Jew?” It says in the introductory “letter to a friend”.

And that is not the only remarkable question that is asked in the foreword to the poems: “Aren't the words arousing: Polnian Jew, in the soul the image of a man, hooded in black, the face fused, the looks dark, and the voice rough? "

Isaschar Falkensohn Behr: The happy one

Ha! The proudest of the beautiful
I looked for fruitless longs
At last full of kindness;
You who my tenderness,
Otherwise mocked my sighs,
That no smile, no look
I would not give me a kiss otherwise;
She confessed my luck to myself.

When I am full of love worries
Hidden deep in the dark
Recently after a nice day
Thinking of the brittle
I exclaimed: cruel Belinde!
Sighing and full of bitterness:
And see! fast like a dream
She stood there ready to be kissed.

Yes i grieved you
She said, tenderly but loved;
Without first seeing your loyalty
I just don't want to confess it to you.
Listening behind these branches
I hear what you have now lost;
Only a sigh could show
Your feeling too tender.

But, as soon as I heard it right,
When I already, from love ‘,
Blessed, blessed am I! shouted:
This sound scared them away.
And, oh pity! with Belinden
I saw when I woke up
Freud and bliss vanish.
Like after a wedding night.

The author

Isaschar Falkensohn Behr (1746-1817) was a merchant, doctor, occasional poet and probably the first Jewish poet to write his verses in German. Much to the annoyance of the young Johann Wolfgang Goethe, who had promised a lot from the volume “Poems from a Pohlnian Jew”, published in 1772 without any indication of the author, only to be disappointed. “What much is there to say! the gods and people hated mediocrity throughout ”, the later poet prince lamented in the“ Frankfurt scholarly advertisements ”.
Behr, who belonged to the circle of enlightened Moses Mendelssohn in Berlin, later converted to the Russian Orthodox faith, completed medical exams and doctorate and practiced under the name Gabriel Grigoryevich in Russia.

Proof of text Without an author: Poems by a Pohlnian Jew, Mietau and Leipzig by Jakob Friedrich Hinz, 1772, p. 9 (quotations), p.45-46 (poem) / Photo credit Jean-Honoré Fragonard: Detail "The Swing" (1767/68)