New crop

Some poems by Johannes Beilharz



Time heals all wounds


So what am I going to do
about this stump of a neck

and ghost of a head moving
at a distance in the surrounding air

and about this heart
sitting on a workbench

like some engine heaved
out of a body,

disconnected, intakes and
outlets still gushing?



Four cities


Bivalve, New Jersey

Terrible fascination!

Founding fathers
of imagination

Bivalve is going to
save a nation

in need of ventricles,
vestibules and



Intercourse, Pennsylvania

Whatever intercourse
they had in mind

speaks for itself


Right in the middle
of the cool side
Ojo Caliente,
right in the allium
heart of



Rounded house

Main object of a water color
begun last night,

roughly modeled on a sky scraper
seen in Frankfurt yesterday.

The quick displacements
possible today:

Started out in the Black Forest
at 6:30 in the morning,

parked in the Frankfurt
Palmengarten underground

parking lot by 9, walked
by German cops in a green

VW van stationed at
the entrance of the

American consulate, waited
in there, drinking light coffee

in one of those brown
American plastic cups

out of a machine, watching
a huge guy with a walrus

face and moustache, unlikely
father of a 5 year old

black girl, exited, walked
through the Palmengarten

and its dusty weedy neglect,
ate one of the by far second

best lunches in the cafe-
teria (lanky blond cook

from Northern Germany,
Thai cashier, neither

very concerned), back
in the car, another race

with stops and gos
through smudges of

other people in their
moving containers,

landed at the Kaiser-
pfalz of Bad Wimpfen

for an ice cream in an
Italian cafe run by the

Turtura family, climbed
the Blue Tower to over-

look the town, the
Neckar valley, the

power plants, back
in the car, back in the

wind corridor of
autobahn, swished by

Asperg, swished by
Leonberg, Sindelfingen,

Herrenberg, back
in the Black Forest

13 hours and 540
kilometers later. To

begin drawing the
rounded house.




As I sit here in front of a flat,
sharp 17-inch CRT on the
second floor of a big, light-
flooded house with lots of
light wood on this highly
allergenic and ozone-prone
June day wearing shorts and
nothing else, preparing
for a weekend with guests,

relatives I haven=t seen
in a while, the sinister
drone of a big wasp some-
where on a window pane
should not diminish my
gratitude for living this
second, this minute, this
hour, trying to accomo-

date it as it is. All morning
long I felt a pressure, an
urge to give way to some
obscure tide, a tide wanting
action inside of me. A
stirring of great openness
to uncertainty, surprise.

The tide=s settled down.
I am chronicling it, and
chronicling means detach-
ment. Swimming with the
tide, I looked at translations
from Down where changed
by Prynne I did in 1985.

Swimming with the tide,
I procrastinated translating
the hydraulic guts of injec-
tion molding machines yet
another time. This does not
bode well for money. Who
going to pay for Gratitude?



Doubts about gratitude

Do I really feel this,
or is it a put-on?

There=s something
missing, right?

And I really feel
threatened enough
by the wasp to want
to get the swatter

and take care of it.



Gratitude continued

I took care of it all right.
The buzzing took me to the
window at the front door,
and the wasp turned out to
be a beautiful bumblebee.
Half a finger long, black,
furry, with brown and beige
stripes across. Stubborn!

However, eventually it could
not resist our cleaning lady
favorite toy (the multi-colored
dust broom for dusting in
between radiator ribs that,
in the world of insects, would
be the equivalent of a bumble-
bee) and flew out the door.

Some karma preserved.



But is she bookish

Does she read?
She moved all of her
books into her
bedroom (among
them a Leon Uris
novel in English
and her language

and when I last
was there the
only books left
in the living room
where one by
Rudolf Steiner
I had recommended
to her and one by
Anne Tyler I had
sent her, plus
something about
some spiritual
topic. Tyler and
Steiner both
looked untouched.

With all her
flitting about
and horseback
riding and job
and carting her
daughters here
and there and
going to the
sauna in Stutt-
gart and being
tired after work
and not sleep-
ing well half
the time and
migraines quite
often there
simply does not
seem much time
left for reading.



But is it romantic

Standing in front of a window
looking out at morning rising
being joined by you

Opening the window
to become involved in the

Then the pleasure of
a clean breakfast
neat things on nice plates

Traveling by car with you
aware of the red fake
leather upholstery

Gliding along
then climbing into the
more austere air

of mountainous
Looking over at you

To see the same
heave of

Not one of those
demonstrated love
sequences out of

Hollywood movies
No please no
quick enumerations

of clichés
Let's live every
moment as it is


All written in 2000 and copyright © by J. Beilharz

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