The Collected Stories of Wolfgang Hildesheimer
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Book by Wolfgang Hildesheimer
STORIES OF W O L F G A N G HILDESHEIMER The legal authorities, in this case, deserve our utmost re spect. One cannot deny their benevolent cooperation in tick lish situations. Ansorge managed to arouse the enthusiasm of the counsel for each side, and thus came the trial that a major contemporary jurisprudent described as "the four-leaf clover on the meadow of libel litigation.” In those days, people still used lovely images, usually plucking them from nature. With cool composure, Ansorge
ambitious, and thus unwilling to forgo the polychrome glory that reflected her in fashion magazines as a famous beauty and in critical works as her famous hus band’s noblest model: a coupling of two functions, which gave substance to her life. She had thus always assured herself of a seamless chronicle of her ripening beauty by getting Rudolf to capture her forms and features with pencil, brush, or chisel, depending on the stage he happened to be in. It is therefore understandable that she
arts, not even great enough for a glorious ephemeralness; the hand of an immortal had only ennobled her mortal coils, and only one of the unnoble parts at that. "Too little!” Gingerly, Hedwig Wiesendanck poured a few colorless 46 W E S T C O T T E ’ S RISE A N D FALL drops into her teacup. Then she carefully inserted the vial with the skull and crossbones into Rudolf s right hand. If they found it there, she thought, they might think that Rudolf Westcotte had wanted to join her, Hedwig
were not already large enough and its size still had to be coped with even when it was over!). It is, as you can imagine, a genuine problem: I would never put up with less. It is a rather compli cated problem, and my friends, or at least the well-meaning among them, advise me to solve it. But I cannot make up my mind to do so, I have gotten used to it. Sometimes, I wonder: what would I be without my problem? And of course I am unable to respond. I would certainly not be the same, whereby I am
began, and during this early phase, it turned out, much to the surprise of all parties, that Golch and Wiener were one and the same. In an attack of selfcritical contrition, Golch had chosen this radical method to challenge publicly the value of his entire output. 32 THE T W O SOULS The astonished court then recessed in order to consider what to do: this lovingly prepared lawsuit, which both the attorneys and the public had looked forward to, could not simply be dropped without further ado.