Lasker-Schüler included many Jewish elements in her poetry. Several of her poems deal with biblical figures, presented in her own unique interpretation. She was particularly fascinated by the miracle-working rabbis of Europe. Although she wrote both prose and poetry, she is best known for her poetic output, especially her Hebräische Balladen (“Hebrew Ballads.” 1913).
She was a noted eccentric who called herself “Prince Yussuf of Thebes” and “Princess Tino of Baghdad.” In 1933, after Hitler came to power, she emigrated to Switzerland. In 1939, after having made two visits to Palestine (1933 and 1937), she decided to make her home in Jerusalem, where her eccentricity intensified. A final volume of her poetry. Mein blaues Klavier, was published three years prior to her death.
Her collected works in three volumes appeared between 1959 and 1962. Else Laskcr-Schiiler’s bestrknown poetry collections are Styx (“The River of Death,” 1902), Der siebente Tag, (“The Seventh Day," 1905), and Hebräische Balladen. Some of the books appeared with her own grotesque illustrations.
FROM ELSE LASKER-SCHULER’S “LORD, LISTEN”
Where must I end? Lord, in the stars I looked, and in the moon and the valleys of Thy fruit.
The red wine is already tasteless in the grape And everywhere, in every core, there’s bitterness.
Her first husband was Berthold Lasker. Her second husband, Herwarth Walden, was the editor of an important journal of German expressionism, Der Sturm.