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[Hermann Hesse, Hilda Rosner] Gertrude

[Hermann Hesse, Hilda Rosner] Gertrude

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Published by: BoysieFreeman on May 06, 2013
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Gertrude
  by Hermann HesseTranslated by Hilda Rosner 
This low-priced Picador book 
 
has been completely reset in a type face
 
designed for easy reading, and was printed 
 
 from new plates. It contains the complete
 
text of the original hard-cover edition,
  NOT ONE WORD HAS BEEN OMITTED.GERTRUDE
 A Picador book / published by arrangement with Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Inc.
 
 PRINTING HISTORY  Farrar, Straus edition published March 1969
 
7 printings through 1972 Bantam edition published April 1974
 
 All rights reserved.
 
 Revised translation © 1969 by Farrar, Straus
A
Giroux, Inc.Translated from the German,
Gertrud;
 from
Gesammeite Schriften,
copyright 1955 by Suhrkamp Verlag, Berlin.This book may not be reproduced in whole or in part, by
 
mimeograph or any other means, without permission.
 
 For information address: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Inc.,
 
19 Union Square West, New York, N.Y. 10003. A Picador book are published by Picador, Inc. Its trademark,consisting of the words "Picador" and the portrayal of abantam, is registered in the United States Patent Office and inother countries.
 
Chapter One
 W
HEN
I
TAKE
a long look at my life, as though from outside, it doesnot appear particularly happy. Yet I am even less justified in calling itunhappy, despite all its mistakes. After all, it is foolish to keep probing for happiness or unhappiness, for it seems to me it would be hard to exchangethe unhappiest days of my life for all the happy ones. If what matters in a person's existence is to accept the inevitable consciously, to taste the goodand bad to the full and to make for oneself a more individual, unaccidentaland inward destiny alongside one's external fate, then my life has beenneither empty nor worthless. Even if, as it is decreed by the gods, fate hasinexorably trod over my external existence as it does with everyone, myinner life has been of my own making. I deserve its sweetness and bitterness and accept full responsibility for it.At times, when I was younger, I wanted to be a poet. And if I were a poet now, I would not resist the temptation to trace my life back throughthe delicate shadows of my childhood to the precious and sheltered sourcesof my earliest memories. But these possessions are far too dear and sacredfor the person I now am to spoil for myself. All there is to say of mychildhood is that it was good and happy. I was given the freedom todiscover my own inclinations and talents, to fashion my inmost pleasuresand sorrows myself and to regard the future not as an alien higher power  but as the hope and product of my own strength. So I passed unmarkedthrough the schools as a disliked, untalented, yet quiet student whom theylet chart his own course finally, because he seemed to elude the stronginfluences brought to bear upon him.At about the age of six or seven, I realized that of all the invisible powers the one I was destined to be most strongly affected and dominated by was music. From that moment on I had a world of my own, a sanctuaryand a heaven that no one could take away from me or belittle, and which Idid not wish to share with anyone. I had become a musician, though I didnot learn to play any instrument before my twelfth year and did not think that I would later wish to earn my living by music.That is how matters have been ever since, without anything essential being changed, and that is why on looking back on my life it does not seemvaried and many-sided, but from the beginning it has been tuned in a single

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