Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Die Gedanken Sind 75

Posted in Comics & Manga, Historia & Memoria, Interna by Suzanne on November 28th, 2006 | BBC Wikipedia

Tomi Ungerer, 1935 (source)

Happy 75th birthday, Tomi!

This is your 4th life. You've been pronounced clinically dead 3 times already and I wish you all the best for your 4th try.

I know that Die Gedanken sind frei is your favourite song in the whole wide world (I studied your biography like a bible when I was a teenager), so I'll sing it for you today:

Die Gedanken sind frei, wer kann sie erraten?
Sie fliegen vorbei, wie nächtliche Schatten.
Kein Mensch kann sie wissen, kein Jäger sie schießen
mit Pulver und Blei, die Gedanken sind frei.

Ich denke, was ich will und was mich beglücket,
doch alles in der Still' und wie es sich schicket.
Mein Wunsch und Begehren kann niemand verwehren,
es bleibet dabei: Die Gedanken sind frei!

Und sperrt man mich ein im finsteren Kerker,
das alles sind rein vergebliche Werke;
denn meine Gedanken zerreißen die Schranken
und Mauern entzwei: Die Gedanken sind frei.

Drum will ich auf immer den Sorgen entsagen
und will mich auch nimmer mit Willen verklagen.
Man kann ja im Herzen, stets lachen und scherzen
und denken dabei: Die Gedanken sind frei.

Ich liebe den Wein, mein Mädchen vor allem
sie tut mir allein am besten gefallen
Ich bin nicht alleine bei meinem Glas Weine
mein Mädchen dabei: die Gedanken sind frei!

Without you, Maurice Sendak, Edward Gorey, Lewis Carroll, Jean-Jacques Sempé, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Wilhelm Busch, die Brüder Grimm, Heinrich Hoffmann, Friedrich Karl Waechter and Hieronymus Bosch, my childhood would have been an utter waste of time.

Thank God I grew up in a time when children's books were still bizarre, grotesque and inspiring enough to make childhood a time full of wonders and discoveries.

Your books, Tomi, were so precious to me that I read them under my blanket with a torch. I dived into the world of Crictor, the friendly snake, I sold matches with Allumette, I baked cakes for the giant in Zeralda's kitchen and I went for a walk with Monsieur Racine and his adorable beast.

And even though I'm still amazed that you're not in the Légion d'honneur yet, monsieur Ungerer, being a persona non grata in the US of A for the simple reason of publishing a catalogue of satirical erotic caricatures is worth just as much as any military decoration to me.

© Tomi Ungerer - click to enlarge

Joyeux anniversaire, monsieur Ungerer!

Thank you for spending all those long childhood hours with me.


Tomi Ungerer on the web

Site officiel de Tomi Ungerer

Centre Tomi Ungerer

ARTE Themenseite zu Tomi Ungerer (by Arte)

• "Weisheit ist sowieso langweilig" (by Weltwoche)

Ich habe einen Traum: Tomi Ungerer (by Die Zeit)

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. RSS 2.0 | Register with Gravatar to get a teeny-weeny icon displayed above your comment!

3 comments to " Die Gedanken Sind 75 "

  1. Gravatar

    kid37 says:

    There is a wonderful audio book read/spoken by him (in German). It's the acoustic version of his euqally wonderful book "Here today, gone tomorrow" ("Heute hier, morgen fort"). I saw the documentation on ARTE, great man, I love his twisted humor.

    November 28th, 2006 at 9:22 pm

  2. Gravatar

    Suzanne says:

    He has a beautiful German accent - I might actually check that audio book out (... even though I hate audio books).

    I held a little speech on Ungerer's work on top of the Münster in Strassburg when I was 18. I think it was my best speech ever...

    December 4th, 2006 at 1:05 am

  3. Gravatar

    Suzanne G. - Giving Taste A Bad Name Since Kindergarten says:

    [...] My favourite video so far is beyond doubt Encyclopedia Pictura’s Wanderlust which offers an alluring peek into an atavistic world inhabited by Sandakesque beasts and Ungereresque flora. [...]

    April 1st, 2008 at 4:19 pm

Leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.