poet Ernst Toller

Ernst Toller

Ernst Toller
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Ernst Toller was a left-wing German playwright, best known for his Expressionist plays and serving as President of the short-lived Bavarian Soviet Republic, for six days.


Ernst Toller was born in Samotschin, Poland, on 1st December 1893. His father was a successful Jewish wholesale merchant. He was schooled in Bromberg where depsite describing it as a "school of miseducation and militarization", he was able to begin his literary career with the publication of a number of articles in the local newspaper and then poetry.

In 1914 Toller moved to France in order to study law at the University of Grenoble. However, within six months the onset ... more »

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Comments about Ernst Toller

  • Aviva Cantor (9/2/2018 11:52:00 AM)

    (2nd submission; previous one apparently unreceived) : where are the Swallow Poems composed by Toller while in prison and published outside from a manuscript smuggled out. the Swallow Book tells the true and tragic story of a pair of swallow who established a nest in Toller's cell and cared for one another and for their young. The pair came to a tragic end.

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  • Aviva Cantor (9/2/2018 11:48:00 AM)

    i just submitted a comment about the swallow book. didn't u receive it? ? ? ? ?

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  • Aviva Cantor (9/2/2018 11:48:00 AM)

    Where are The Swallow Poems? Toller wrote a book of poetry while in prison about the pair of swallows that established a nest in his cell. The poems, deeply moving, express his joy at the birds' devotion to each other and to their young, and his despair at their tragic end. He smuggled the manuscript out of prison and it was published and later translated into English.

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Best Poem of Ernst Toller


In spring I go to war
To sing or to die.
What do I care for my own troubles?
Today I shatter them, laughing in pieces.

Oh, Brothers, know that young spring came
In a whirlwind.
Quickly throw off tired grief
And follow her in a host.

I have never felt so strongly
How much I love you, Oh, Germany,
As the magic of spring surrounds you
Amidst the bustle of war.

Read the full of Spring