Learning poetry at school? Not for everyone. Why Ulrich Tukur nevertheless developed a love for poems and why, in his opinion, it can be difficult to have one ready at the right moment.

Actor Ulrich Tukur (64) has a passion for poetry. “I come from a household where there was no television set. We had a Bakelite telephone and a radio. And that was essentially it,” said Tukur (“crime scene”) of the German Press Agency.

In the evenings his father would sit next to him and read him ballads, for example by Friedrich Schiller, Theodor Fontane and Ludwig Uhland. “That was my cinema.”

Schiller’s “Der Taucher” made a deep impression on him. “I wanted to be a diver after that,” Tukur said. When he later fell in love, also unhappily, it was poems by Goethe, Storm or Hesse. “Beacons in the dark.” Great writers got to the heart of something he himself felt vaguely. He was astonished with admiration for this kind of linguistic art.

On tour

In the near future, Tukur will not only be on tour with his band, but also with the reading “Vom Zauber eines Verwehendes Sprachen. German Ballads and Poems». In his opinion, language is less valued in these times. «We live in visual worlds and visual worlds of images kill the language.» He and Christian Redl therefore wanted to organize an evening to remember “what great action films ballads can be”.

But what was it like in school? Don’t many find memorizing poetry terrifying? “To be honest, I didn’t think it was that great either,” Tukur said on the phone while in Italy. “I really like doing it now. That trains the brain.” It is a pleasure for him to say a poem that he enjoys until he gets it. There are always situations where it fits. “And then people are very impressed. Young men should remember that you can also impress women with it.”