First Poem of a Year For No Reason At All

January 3, 2017 § 2 Comments

How does the first poem of a year feel?
A bit of a duty of course,
For a poet must have something to say on important dates
And sharps her nails, even when full.

But first how to overcome the sense of uselessness
All has been said before, even better,
By others, or by oneself too, especially
After a glass of wine and a few broken hearts.

Then one looks around: The winter; many deaths
One looks back: The summer; many deaths
Now taking pictures of love imagined in the future
Now talking to humans imagined in the future.

Where is humanity’s heart to
Stab it with needles, like a voodoo doll,
Goal reversed: to heal not to hurt.
One heart after the other. The smallest first.

John Berger

January 3, 2017 § Leave a comment

(5 November 1926 – 2 January 2017)

Out of a Dream

December 16, 2016 § Leave a comment

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How I wish that my dreams would let you go. You don’t deserve this freedom—so often you denied me—to walk in and out my kitchen, to change faces and sexes, to cook and eat in it, tell people you love me you never told you loved me, hold my hand and swim in moonlights, and all this children’s stuff. So inappropriate for someone who spat on time’s wheel. After all I am gone now and this is only your dream.

The Bag of Winds

December 14, 2016 § Leave a comment


This is not a very big city. It is a peaceful city. It has one of the most beautiful Christmas markets I’ve visited here in Germany, with a lovely, over a hundred years old, wooden carousel. 

My son has almost reached the age to find riding such a carousel uncool, but not quite yet. He still loves riding the bigger wooden horses. He is though a rather shy boy and he finds it difficult to claim a horse for himself at rush hours. Besides, you should also really see how some parents behave in order to get their kids onto a horse… 

Today, after he had lost his dream horse to at least three younger children and their determined parents, he finally got his foot on its stirrup. But out of nowhere, a blonde young mother pushed him away in quite a rough manner and got her not much younger daughter onto the horse. The carousel started turning leaving my son and me totally shocked on the side. I turned furious to her as she was going back to her partner and a friend standing nearby: “That was a great behaviour lesson you taught your daughter tonight” I said, “such an inappropriate and aggressive way to behave to another child!” Then she turned to me, having her man and friend on her two sides: “*You* are the last to tell me what to do here!”, she told me with the undertone that any migrant speaking with a foreign accent would immediately recognise. “You and your sort.” “You and your sort.” repeated the smoking man.  

I don’t think I have ever faced such a naked aggression before, though sometimes the more subtile forms of it,  and my son had certainly never faced a situation like this before. He was puzzled and scared: “I want to go mum,” he said “don’t wanna ride no more.” I was scared too but they had turned away. I took my son by the hand and chose the way right next to them. “You and your sort” I repeated loudly in their face as I went by, but went by I did.

The weather in west and east is getting worse day by day. Someone has opened Aeolus’s bag of winds. It’s chilly.

Nocturnal

December 9, 2016 § Leave a comment

(from night tweets, December 2016)

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And if the middle of the night

awaits for you without a dream

you feel at first relieved

because there have been nightmares.

 

You jump onto the train of darkness,

a proud hobo with a backpack of hope,

maybe the next dream will save

a loved one, or a stranger.

 

Awakenings in the wee hours,

calls from the ones far away

the families, the friends, the dead,

fears you put to sleep too early.

 

The night smells of your fresh washed hair;

animals, apes and snakes, frogs and princes

will crawl out of it at midnight.

Wait for their kisses.

 

The night is a river running west;

when the dark water gets less this side

it’s flooding with darkness the other.

Now take your day bus.

 

 

Infidelities

December 3, 2016 § 2 Comments

He would leave his presents at places where strangers could easily find them as well and think they were for them. This game excited and inspired him to even more complicated and ambitious plans. In the end he would forget of course for whom he had initially bought the present for. Only the ones who had found it now mattered.

Music: December (Infidelities)

First published on Instagram
 

The Photographer’s Contract

November 23, 2016 § Leave a comment


I haven’t taken a single film photo in November yet. There has been some, even if faint, inviting afternoon winter light on a couple of days, but I lacked the energy and motivation to pick my camera and take a walk. In times when historical developments take place, especially depressive ones, a single person often loses the faith in the purpose or the influence of her own doings. Too small, I am, too irrelevant, what I do, too weak, my voice, one thinks. But we know we must eventually recover.

For no reason at all, or for all reasons of the world and some of those above, I kept thinking of a snapshot I took last summer while I was taking a beautiful afternoon walk with my sister around Plato’s Academy Park in Athens, a place full of traces of its historical importance but also still very much of a recreation centre for the inhabitants of the area.

On that warm July afternoon, the park was full of people walking about, chatting with each other, and several groups of kids and teenagers, either playing together or hanging out with their peers. I took photos of some of those youths, as the way kids move or interact with each other in groups is something always beautiful to watch: natural, surprising and refreshing.

I took this particular photo when I noticed the interaction between the teenage boy and the girl in the foreground: the boy playfully pulling the girl’s hair, probably clumsily expressing that way his interest in her, as boys often do in that age. Is that ever to change, I thought, rather amused and not really alarmed by the situation, could we ever teach our boys otherwise?

Only later, at home, when I took a more careful look at that sequence of photos I saw that I had actually documented a more severe act of violence. In the background a little boy, maybe my son’s age, was held onto the ground, being brutally punched by an older boy. An even closer look gave me the certainty that the fight was not a game and that the other boys had run towards the scene only to stand around as spectators.

I don’t know how everything ended for that young guy: if he was seriously hurt, or if someone helped him in the end, because by that time I had walked on, clueless of what I had just not witnessed.

I think of that photo feeling a bit powerless, but also not without a sense of guilt. How well do I see what I see? How can I see faster, understand faster, help faster?

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