Brecht, 1933

He’s still on top:
spinning out his dialectic

He’s still on top:
spinning out his dialectic
pillorying the fascists
demanding that his books also be burned on the square
and organizing an antibourgeois theater.

But the most powerful of his enemies,
the ones who prefer poetry
to dialectical materialism,
are already whispering to him
that he’s surrendered:

in 1953 he failed to support the uprising
of the Berlin workers,
and in 1941, when arriving in the US, said
that he had nothing to do anymore with Communism.

“But how could you fail to support the worker uprising!”
— cry these people, theatrically (in the style of the prerevolutionary theater),
who have nothing to show for themselves but a handful of cold precise prediction.

 — Translated by Keith Gessen

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