Trug und Schein: A Correspondence

25. August 1938

Monster4711, Warnschild, Maul- und Klauenseuche, Kreismuseum Syke, 13 May 2012, herunterladen http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maul-_und_Klauenseuche, Juli 2013

[380825–1‑1]

L., on August 25, 1938

Dear Miss [Lau­be]!

I very much enjoy­ed your pic­tures. I would like to keep all of them. The pho­to­graph details are well selec­ted, only one image has too much empty sky. The posi­ti­ons are inva­ria­b­ly lively—women always under­stand bet­ter how to place them­sel­ves in the right light!—and if I did not know for whom you sat laug­hing so grace­ful­ly as a model, I would actual­ly be jea­l­ous.

And one thing beca­me clear to be while loo­king at the images: your girl­friend brings a string of your natu­re into pitch, one that I did not yet know, perhaps also can­not know, becau­se it pre­su­mes more fami­lia­ri­ty, this care­free way of being, this care­free cheer­ful­ness, this unbur­den­ed mirth, the way we some­ti­mes could feel during choir prac­ti­ce. Tre­a­su­re this good cheer and main­tain this girl friend with whom you can be so mer­ry even if you must some­ti­mes bear a grudge against her. Becau­se I am wri­ting about detach­ment, I take note of how strai­ned our encoun­ters are, how you cau­se my who­le per­son to beco­me taught. Even befo­re­hand the ten­si­on and expec­ta­ti­on, the pre­pa­ra­ti­on, the tra­vel, and then—without inten­ding or noti­cing it particularly—the intro­spec­tion of oneself and the other, on top of that the whol­ly new impres­si­ons from the trip; all of that when taken tog­e­ther is a gre­at exer­ti­on.

I recent­ly thought, sin­ce the dark time of the year is now loo­m­ing, that it is too bad that we do not live clo­ser to one ano­t­her, that I am no lon­ger in O. On the con­tra­ry, ano­t­her thought aro­se immedia­te­ly — who knows if we would have grown clo­ser in that case, the­re were a num­ber of obsta­cles, you under­stand, that were eli­mi­na­ted with the distance; I belie­ve the distance is good and had to be.

After our first mee­ting you under­took the task of drawing a con­clu­si­on. It will hap­pen soon enough, and it must, that we decla­re our­sel­ves. If I con­si­der how swift­ly the time races for­wards, all things con­si­de­red, how quick­ly the few hours of our tog­e­ther­ness elap­se, then I would like to say that some time will still have to pass befo­re we can decla­re our rela­ti­ons­hip. Until then the agree­ment remains: You too remain free to with­draw and—as far as we este­em one another—without deceit  we will deal in truths with one ano­t­her.

The Nur­em­berg Ral­ly, 1938

Three things have been sett­led the way I wan­ted them to be in the last few days. 1) Our school fes­ti­val, which was to have take place last Sunday, has been reschedu­led for Sep­tem­ber due to foot-and-mouth dise­a­se, and appar­ent­ly, it will now not take place this year.  2) A few weeks ago, I was urged to tra­vel to the Reich Par­ty Day [in Nuremberg—the 5th cele­bra­ti­on of the Nazi par­ty sin­ce the birth of the Third Reich]. One can­not just flat­ly refu­se such things, so I decla­red mys­elf pre­pa­red to go the­re as a civi­li­an; then I was told that accom­mo­da­ti­ons and board would be in the tent camp. That is not for me; as I con­ti­nued to con­si­der how I could free mys­elf from that sna­re, I recei­ved news that I could with­draw. 3) And now you wri­te that your trip is also can­cel­led. Ano­t­her stone from my heart, though only a small one. We would have had to pre­tend we didn’t know each other, perhaps we would have had to even play the­se roles with secret pleasure—but it is bet­ter that we did not have to do so.

Heart­felt gree­tings to your par­ents,

And you yourself, [Miss. Lau­be], are most hear­ti­ly gree­ted by your  [Roland Nord­hoff].

Until this com­ing Sunday at the accus­to­med time. I will return your pic­tures to you then.

Plea­se fol­low and like us:
25. August 1938

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