Gerald Fiebig, Three Poems

[My translations of three poems by German contemporary poet Gerald Fiebig: b. 1973; also editor of music fanzine and musician; first poetry collection 1996]

strategy

read the city’s sectors:
leaf through the footpath’s flagstones
sunday evenings in the streets
with names like aeronautical engineers.
drink the beer from ground control
& lick the fat from your fingers.
the sky over the cbd is rotting
like a piece of raw bacon.
later even in this suburb a rainbow
will shimmer into the dark
& the concrete trees talk to you.
If you get wet, lean your forehead
against a glass wall
& from your booth call up empty flats:
the answering machine is under water.
dark rooms in which the roar
of the rain fades away.
later the night turns up its colour organ:
from a window without a light
a groovy funk riff snows down onto the street
& the rhythm drives you on.
it helps you walk.

sunday

on the sixth day g. created humans
& was drunk in the evening.
then in the morning jehova’s witnesses on the phone.

in the emptied room
the sky hums blue as a TV screen.
the light is that blunt
that I don’t even bleed.
cold sweat grows flat in the sun:
keep refrigerated.
my body comes off the skin in bits.
a lark shits on my heart:
it’s spring. could also be a blackbird.
what do I know.
the lodger thumps against the skull ceiling.
I pull it over my ears.

a day like having a drill in your mouth.

beijing night piece

Pink memories
foul the air like putrid corpses by the road
– Li Jinfa, Nocturne, 1922

evening drips from the sulphur yellow sun
like pumpkin flesh floating in sugar water.

the heat waves of carbon dioxide beat
against your skin, day & night

roars the surf of the ring road through your blood:
dream of streets in the fifth floor, a word

in four positions. like bodies stand the signs in the streets.
you stare at human bodies with an amputated language.

your naked eye seeks support in the text of their gestures.
looks flash back, a substance that leaves you empty.

memory of meat in your language,
what you’ve read about china rots like corpses

from their grave in your brain made of sulphur light:
night time you meet the beloved dead.

daytime mao lies waxen before you,
undead in his mausoleum. outside

colonel sanders’ plastic doll is waiting for him
smiling before the kentucky fried chicken.

state founder. company founder. founding times.
a dream that isn’t yours suffocates your head

like the smell of the canal before your window.
a bit further on you buy fish with silver bellies

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~ by Peter Lach-Newinsky on September 1, 2012.

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