“If Hitler also Spelled Hiedler,” by Joe Dolce

17 03 2014



If Hitler also Spelled Hiedler


Hüttler or Huettler

at seventeen had remained

in watercolour been accepted

at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna

even become a priest as once intended

the swastika would still signify

auspiciousness in Sanskrit

Israel wouldn’t exist

no Berlin or West Bank walls

holocaust would refer to

a burnt offering of Moses

WW I would still be The Great War

I would have had one more uncle.




One of the things I like best about my online work with the poetic turn here and over at Voltage Poetry is that it’s allowed me to come into contact with some great folk, terrific artists, poets and thinkers. Most recently, this work has put me in touch with Joe Dolce, who has allowed me to reprint the above poem, which, among other things is a great example of a list-with-a-twist.

A little about Joe:

Born in Painesville, Ohio, in 1947, Joe Dolce moved to Australia in 1979, becoming a citizen in 2004. He is known internationally for the most successful song in Australian music history, Shaddap You Face, number one on the pop charts in fifteen countries, holding the record for the largest selling single in Australian music history for 33 years. Over the past twenty years he has achieved award-winning recognition as songwriter, composer, poet, and essayist. He set fifteen poems of C. P. Cavafy to music as well as works by Sappho, Sylvia Plath, Les Murray, Ali Cobby Eckermann, and others. In 2010, he won the Launceston Poetry Cup at the 25th Tasmanian Poetry Festival. He has had poetry and essays published in Quadrant, Monthly, The Canberra Times, PEN (in English/Arabic translation), Meanjin, Etchings, Overland, Cordite, Journey, Carmenta, Vine Leaves, Eye of the Telescope (sci-fi), Contrappasso and Antipodes (USA). He lives in Carlton, Victoria, a suburb of Melbourne. His website is here.



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