On Rereading Hesse’s Steppenwolf at Age Fifty

by Jean L. Kreiling

A man, a wolf, a thousand souls, a quest
for truth in art and life — a quest derailed
by art and life — I once would have confessed
that all the angst the Steppenwolf bewailed
was mine as well. It’s why I turned the pages:
for artfully compelling confirmation
that my own restlessness, regrets, and rages
deserved attention and elaboration.
But now the story strikes me as verbose
and self-indulgent. Have I grown too wise
or just too weary? Too dull for this dose
of dream and doubt, too cold to empathize?
Because I ask the questions, I still turn
the pages, knowing I have more to learn.

Audio player requires Flash 7 or later. Get Flash.

Jean L. Kreiling is a Professor of Music at Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts. Her poetry has appeared in several print and on-line journals, including Contemporary Sonnet, Dogwood, Ekphrasis, The Evansville Review, The Formalist, London Poetry Review, Mezzo Cammin, The Pennsylvania Review, and SLANT.  She was a finalist for both the 2009 Howard Nemerov Sonnet Award and the 2010 Dogwood Poetry Prize.

See links to all sonnets by this author

« Previous Next »

Pat Jones
Published 2 January 2011