These letters between Nelly Sachs (1891-1970), recipient of the 1966 Nobel Prize for Literature, and the great German-speaking poet Paul Celan (1920-1970) lasted from 1954 until Celan's death by suicide. Sachs died the day Celan was buried.
"This is a beautiful book, from the dust cover painting of Rembrandt's Jacob Wrestling with the Angel, which held special significance for Sachs, to the sound translation, scrupulous notes, and dual chronology, revealing intriguing parallels . . . The correspondence includes lovely Sachs poems and interesting accounts of their meeting and of contact with other prominent writers of the time. The introduction and afterword are indispensable, as is the entire book."—Choice
"Even while they lived, Nelly Sachs and Paul Celan seemed to have receded into the remoteness of legends. Both poets lived and wrote outside the borders of the two countries that called themselves German, indeed they lived outside of German-speaking Europe. Both were in exile and tormented; they owed their torment to that 'Master from Germany' who condemned people of their kind to 'the dwellings of death' and 'a grave in the air.' And both had been saved, of course, but they experienced their salvation as guilt."—The Times, London