I do not want to develop Kleist's biography. Many new books have been written on the occasion of the sad anniversary. I have read: Peter Michalzik, Kleist, Dichter, Krieger, Seelensucher, Propyläen Verlag Berlin 2011.
The book cover shows the only existing portrait of this disturbing personality. He was soldier, student, dropout, traveler, letter artist, farmer, soul seeker, playwright, civil servant on probation, hater of Napoleon, war correspondent, short novel writer, publisher of a literature magazine, newspaper editor, and rebel who during his whole short life was always attracted by suicide. His "problem" was that he did not want to go alone. All of his friends, although sometimes depressed like him, refused. Eventually he found a 31-year-old married woman, a friend, cancer stricken, Henriette Vogel, who was ready to accompany him on his last journey.
I would like to show some pictures I took from 12 to 15 November attending the Kleist Festival in and around Berlin including a theater marathon with three pieces on three evenings: Der Prinz von Homburg, Penthesilea and Der zerbrochene Krug (The Broken Jug) followed by nightly discussions with the director and actors.
The Maxim Gorki Theater in Berlin Unter den Linden.
On its frontface Kleist's Das Erdbeben in Chili (The Earthquake in Chile).
The Kleistmuseum in Frankfurt on the Oder in an old manor house.
The house where Kleist was born was destroyed during the war.
We experienced a sunny November morning at the Wannsee, like the one Heinrich and Henriette lived through before their deaths.
Nun, o Unsterblichkeit bist du ganz mein! (Prinz von Homburg)
O immortality, now you are all mine!