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376                   MODERN   GERMAN   LITERATURE

ness in Der Trinker (1950), published after his early death. Through
all of Fallada's serious fiction runs the problem of character with
its strength (Der eiserne Gustav) or weakness; the hero breaks his
fate or is broken by it, as he is in Wer einmal aus dem TSkchnapffrisst
(1934); here a released prisoner fights hard to recover a place in
the social scale, but finds himself at last back in prison.

If in Fallada's tales there is a return to the Mdrchen in those of
ERNST PENZOLDT (1892- ) there is a new phase of the idyll. He
began with poems (Der Gefdhrte) and turned to silver-pencilled
prose in Idyllen (192.3). His Novelle Der arme Chatter ton (1928)
probes the secret of the very nature of poetry: the boy-poet dreams
himself into his tragic illusion. In Der Zwrg (i 927) Penzoldt dreams
his idyllic moods into the days of rococo in his own Franconia.