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Selecting Heine

In response to:

End of the Line from the August 10, 1995 issue

To the Editors:

I was pleased to see Gabriele Annan thoughtful review of The Poet Dying, Ernst Pawel’s account of Heinrich Heine’s final years in Paris [NYR, August 10, 1995], but I would like to correct a small misconception. Annan assumes that the poems included in the book were selected by Pawel to reflect on the text. However, my father was terminally ill when he completed the manuscript, and died a few weeks later, unaware of the editor’s suggestion that a selection of Heine’s poetry be added. My sister and my wife chose the poems included in the published work. While they hopefully complement the text, they cannot accurately be read as reflecting the author’s intent.

Michael A. Pawel MD
New York City

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