To Eat of Meat Joyously

To Eat of Meat Joyously
To eat of meat joyously, a juicy loin cut
And with the fresh-baked, fragrant rye bread
Chunks from the whole cheese, and to swallow
Cold beer from the jug: such things are held in 
Low esteem, but to my mind, to be put into the grave
Without ever enjoying a mouthful of good meat
Is inhuman, and I say that, I who
Am not good at eating.
Bertolt Brecht

from Bertolt Brecht Poems, edited by John Willett and Ralph Manheim (London: Eyre Methuen Ltd, 1976) 

translated by Lee Baxendall

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Bertolt Brecht

Bertolt Brecht was born in Augsburgh, Bavaria, in 1898.

An influential theatre practitioner of the 20th century, Brecht made equally significant contributions to dramaturgy, theatrical production, and film theory. The Berliner Ensemble - the theatre company operated by Brecht and his wife - toured widely across Europe performing Brecht’s plays, and became perhaps the most famous German touring theatre of the postwar era.

Brecht’s poetry has been widely published in addition to numerous plays, essays, theoretical works and fiction.

He died in 1956.

Read more about this poet
About To Eat of Meat Joyously

This poem, representing Germany, is part of The Written World – our collaboration with BBC radio to broadcast a poem from every single nation competing in London 2012