Memory and poetry go together, absolutely. It is a matter of preserving and of remembering things.
Everything is autobiography, even if one writes something that is totally objective. The fact that it's a subject that seizes you makes it autobiographical.
I am imprinted with the whole sense of European history, especially German history, going back to World War I, which really destroyed all the old values and culture. My grandparents had been reasonably well-off but they became quite poor, living in an attic apartment.
Well, language seems to be something that obsesses me. I'm always writing about it.
Poetry, for me, is the answer to, 'How does one stay sane when private lives are being ransacked by public events?' It's something that hangs over your head all the time.
When I was in college, I did do some writing of poetry, somewhat inspired, I think at that time, by Carl Sandburg, because English was still relatively new to me, and Sandburg, of course, wrote in a very easy-to-understand, very colloquial and informal manner.
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