Archive for the ‘Poems’ Category


30. Juli 2019

Knirschende Reifen
langsame Fahrt vor das
nicht mehr bewohnte Haus

An Malerinnen und Maler

9. September 2018

Man sollte nicht alles malen.
Wenn es als Bildausschnitt wunderbar aussieht,
mit grün, türkis, braun, gelb und grau,
ist es vielleicht eine Haufenlaugung
mit der in einer Mine in Niger
Uran von Erz getrennt wird.

Blau, dunkelrot, weiss und schwarz
kann das Innere eines auf einem Steg in Japan
mit einem rostigen Messer
aufgeschlitzten Wals sein.

Natürlich kann man das malen,
aber man muss damit rechnen,
dass es den Leuten gefällt.


The Short Memoires of a Diplomat

19. Mai 2009

 No, I wasn’t pleased to meet you all.
With some of you, the talk was rather small
and the drinks were never long enough.
Excuse me if I sound e little rough.
A diplomat is mostly just a mime. 
We’re not allowed to call it waste of time,
when everybody thinks we have a ball.

While some to meet, I must say, was a pleasure,
for many others dullness does not measure –
so big their ego was, so small their heart.
Were I allowed to make a brand new start,
there are some, whose names I would recall,
while others’, please forgive me, not at all.

I wasn’t very pleased to spend my time
with people lacking any sense of beauty,
but often had to, in my line of duty.
They all had reasons, but I found no rhyme.

So if I turn my back now to this race
of vanities, I’m looking for a place,
where small things speak and pride is just a mumble.
I long for people honest, true and humble.
And for a slower pace.

All I Can Say About Love

21. Dezember 2007

There is a beginning
And there is an end
And in between
There is some kind of story
You can’t tell
Exactly where it starts
When you’re in the night sky
And see the stars
The runway lies
In the dark
You’ll never know
Exactly where it ends
When you touch the ground
And walk out of the airport
All you can do is
Call a cab
There is a beginning
And there is an end
That’s all I can say
About love

Hope on the Rocks

10. April 2002

Hope is a liar.
Don’t hold it against her.
She can’t help it.

Drink her for what
She is.

Even if afterwards
When you’re sober again
Everything stays
Like it always was.

Walking the Dog on a Rainy Monday Morning on the first Day of Summer 1999

21. Juni 1999

The weekend kind of strange:
Saturday went by like a series of dreams
Out of which the family members
Emerged at different times
To drink a glass of milk
Or stand in front of the fridge
Before going back
To separate worlds
Where nobody ever
Is hungry or sad

Sunday we drove around
The kids noisy
In the back of the car
And only the dog
Quiet and happy to be
On the move

The sun was shining
The bikers and cyclists swarming
And we never seemed
To arrive

There is so little we can do
you said. And I wondered if we
Had been thinking about the same things

Tonight the rain set in
Soon after midnight
And kept on pounding on the roof
Under which we were trying to sleep
Until it was time to get up

After the kids had left
I walked the dog
With the rain still falling
Wondering why
My umbrella felt light as a feather

I thought of Saturday
The dreams and bits
And of Sunday with
the noise in the car
and your words
taking off from the trees
like the last birds of spring

When I came out of the woods
I closed my umbrella
And the rain stopped.

(June 21, 1999)

God Shows up for Lunch

30. November 1998

When out of the blue at lunch
God was mentioned
I asked my kids: How
Do you guys imagine him?

I always saw God as Mickey Mouse
With enormous ears
To listen to all the prayers
My older son said

My younger daughter sees him
All in white
Only his eyes, his mouth and
His nose are not white

My younger son sees God
As a Chinese (he likes
the Chinese) with the head
of a Panda bear

My older daughter says God is
A Barbie Doll with enormous breasts
Then she laughs out loud
No: A man five meters tall
With an endless cape
And his cape is
The universe

Five meters is not tall at all
Says one of her brothers
And she replies: Have you ever jumped
From the five meter board?

Moving out

26. Oktober 1994

The landlord had left his family
for another woman
some years ago.

After a while
his ex-wife had moved away
with the kids

The marks in the walk-in closet said:
Jim: 4 feet 2
Julian: 5 feet 6

Before we moved in
the landlord had told the painters
to paint the whole house
except for the walk-in closet

Afraid perhaps the boys
might stop growing

Death like a Lover

25. Mai 1993

Death like a lover

You left at birth

(for what kind of life?)

Is following you from a distance

One day, she knows,

You shall turn to her.

One day this silly affair of yours

Shall be over,

And she will be there

To embrace you.