Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Henrik Nordbrandt: 'Offshore Wind' - Part V


As the most important of my principles
I always eat an apple
core and all.
So it must be her teeth
that have left their mark on that core over there
now that her lips
as the crow flies
are more than three thousand kilometres away.

It’s lying there on the stair
shrivelled, brown and just as ugly
as it is far
out of the town, through the forests, mountains, silver mines
over the sea and what you otherwise dream about
until you find your wings
and meet her in flight.

But for the time being I hate her
because she threw away that core there.

So that poor worm
which considered it its home
and had never heard of Western Philosophy
and especially Freud
as she says, as opposed
to the animals was an idiot

dried up one stair lower down.


When we pulled in to the side
the brambles scratched the paint of the car
to my already threadbare

While I rummaged under the bonnet
you admired a golden bird
with a long, crimson tail
whose song soared and dipped
above the river bed among the mountains.

I too from time to time
must have cast a glance upwards
and have tuned my ear to something
else than the off-sound of the engine
I realise now, with the summer over
and us talking on the phone

from two different sides of a dark continent
where the mountain tops have begun to gleam white.


There is more sun than shadow in the shadow
and more shadow than sun in the sun.
The weather is tatty like a three-day-old
shirt over the back of a chair
and on my retina there is a spot
where the sun has produced a fly
in a winter-white room.
It will never go away
and exactly as far off as she is
she will never go away either
and the door she took with her when she left
so that house will never be shut
and the heart pumps in vain
because the heart’s doors are open like the house’s.
I cannot get up from the bed
and find no rest
because I cannot feel myself for flies.
‘I’ll find another woman all right,’
sounds tempting at first
but then sets my teeth on edge like sugar.


You mustn’t leave me, you mustn’t!
But be so kind, if you do
to take your things with you
so they won’t be left behind
in some old shed or other
as they did in the dream
I escaped from so badly last night.

It was funny enough, that shed:
It was blue, and then it was on a jetty
and through the drizzle the full moon
shone on the red shutters
where someone had painted mermaids and sea anemones.
Behind the door hung your dressing gown
the embroidered one with the tassels
and the gramophone was playing your music
precisely as we had taught it to.

Then I knew that you had left me
and that it was because of the motor bike
that I had left
behind one of the many pubs on the bathing jetty
and forgotten when I had left the place.

All night long I walked around in the rain
looking for the motor bike
a large, vulgar, chromium-plated thing
I would never have acquired myself
but now had lost
and therefore would give everything to find.

Because I couldn’t find it
your things didn’t disappear either from the blue house 
and because your things didn’t disappear
you didn’t come back either
and because you didn’t come back
I will never dream about the little blue house again.

Therefore I cannot exclude either
that in my dream
I drove into the harbour on my motor bike and drowned.

That possibly doesn’t explain all of it
but it is easier to live with
than if you had simply left me. 

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