Other Poems by:

Ulrike Gerbig

Day/Night

Cool

Collected

Concentrated

 

I am a mechanical Buddha

I am programmed to follow the teachings

I breathe into the pain the fear the dark place

Where desperation hides her face 

A child in a corner silenced unwanted denied and forgotten

 

I walk a straight line from task to task

I am most efficient I am in perfect balance

I am at harmony with all things and all beings

With what is was will be I renounce all desires

 

Cool

Clean

Collected

 

I concentrate on survival

I follow the rules I stay close to

My center I block my ears and eyes

Against unwanted images I am a rock

Solid impenetrable I hold forth against a sea

Of longing eating holes into my well-kept resistance

 

At night 

I dream of

Infinite embraces of

Limitless gazes of boundless caresses of

Ceaseless encounters of begging voices of 

Pleas to stay and surrender of moans and of sighs

Of mingling liquids of salty juices of unending sweetness

Languid indulgence of incessant satiation of the end of starvation

 

Nocturnally weightless

I defy all solar gravity I become

Shimmering plankton under the moonís silver surface

I dive deep into the currents of passion I swim myself free

Precipitate delivery

For the longest time my heart has been in labor
Words kicked and pushed 
Cold sweat wetted my face 
Sticky with sweat I desperately wished
For images to be born on already stained sheets

For the longest time I was pregnant with ripening metaphors 

Slowly developing in my mindís amniotic fluids 
Double my weight I dragged myself around 
Large with unwanted expectations 
I tried to stand on swollen feat that had walked me 
All the way to Eden and back 
Weary I carried dreams fathered by strangers
I tossed and turned in my sleep still could not come down

For the longest time I searched for a name for 
The cuckooís egg bedded in my soul 
Destined to be born unwanted and unperceived 
Demandingly ceaselessly growing inside of me 

For the longest time I waited for the waters to break
For relieve of this alien burden 
For the moment it would be visible touchable independent
For the cut of the umbilical chord
For it to be born 
For me to be finally free

Summer/House

(for R.)

 

A space by a sea of hopes

As capricious as the tides

With airy walls thin enough

For the passionate streams

Flowing between our skins

 

A room expanding contracting like

A womb at the highest moment of bliss

Pushing us towards awareness

 

We swam the rough surge of our need

Naked unabashed unrestricted

 

We painted each otherís yearning body

With soft wetness with mud from

The dark clay pit of our hearts

 

In the furnace of this summer

The winds of our sated sighs

Cooled off the sweat after each romp

 

We rested then drank each other then played again

 

For a splinter of eternity this was ours 

We furnished it with words 

We decorated its walls with could be

We covered the floor with soft-woven desires

We fed each other the salty the bitter the sweet

 

At dusk we wrapped ourselves in a cocoon of borrowed time

We crawled into each otherís eyes and mouth and skin

Got lost and found and lost and found and lost

 

We entered sleep joined at the hip and at the heart

Protected by our shell we slept and dreamed

Dawn found us caressing each other still

Amazed at the beauty of now

Aware of the inevitable arrival of fall

Frankfurt

City slick sluts

Screaming scents

Flash static nylons

Cheap lace 

 

Chatty old women

Peddle

Free  advice 

Empathy

Sliced history

In old cider places

 

Under chestnut and oak

Gnarled as 

Gold-encrusted hands

 

Multi-coloured 

Snot-nosed kids

Graffiti 

Freshly painted 

Walls

 

Tags

Mark off

Stomping grounds

 

Clueless

Youngsters

Search 

For identity

 

Brisk bankers

Dance around the

Golden calf

Worship 

Multi storey office buildings

 

Eroticism of 

Phallus probing

Smog-hazy skies

 

Silver birds

Criss-cross

This self-made

Metropolis

This blabber-mouthed boom box 

Blaring music from Babylon

Sodom and Gomorrah

 

Rackety 

Cheeky 

Dirt cheap

Benevolence

 

Her spicy smell of

Petrol Money Sex

Permeates 

My hair

My skin

My bones

 

Marks me off

As hers 

Forever

 

This Babel of

Tabla sounds

Rip-roaring streets

Feverish crowds

 

Soundtrack

Setting

Staff

Script

Of the film

In which I

Play the lead

This is it

For now

Sweat

Blood

Tears

Shit

Semen

 

We cry

We long

We mate

We dream

We deliver

We defecate

 

Eventually we die

 

It is what we are here for

 

Perfection is elsewhere

 

Stars

Moon

Sky

Are heartless

 

There is nothing to break

 

Silence guides

The havoc we wreak

Our futile fight against

The ultimate cause  

 

If planets  had a soul

They would laugh

 

As it is there is

No answer to be expected

 

Walls 

Limits 

Borders 

Merging

Fusion 

Break-up

Isolation 

 

The unsavoury things we do

The sweetness we sow

The tenderness we reap

 

Fear 

Pain 

Pleasure 

Laughter 

Loss

 

Life

 

Questions litter our rooms like corpses

Doubt overgrows our gardens

Clouds of guilt blacken our sun

 

Arbitrary

Dispensable

Imaginary

 

While we breathe

Mistakes are obligatory 

 

We are not supposed

To reach our graves

Unsoiled

 

Our skin is not our Sunday dress

Mother will not scold us

For being dirty

 

We are meant to

Stain the carpet

 

It is the only mark

We leave

The only sign

We were really here

Bukowski's World

There was no room

For poetic bullshit 

Only for a typewriter a radio

For long lonely nights

For Beethoven and beer

Or women who came and went

Down on him or he on them

He wrote about it later

Or about horse races or

Work at the post office or

Landlords and crazy neighbours

Or knives spinning or heat or fires

He wrote about the world how he saw it

Through a haze of anger and liquor

Words scared as his face

Lines sore as his back

Absolve a world full of 

Sex pain trash and beauty

Little Mermaid

I sang vaguely 

To distant princes

Until I wanted legs

And became a dancer

Without a tongue

Now each step I take

Each waltz I make

Cuts my flesh deeply

My mute pain is invisible

Except for the rhinestones

Adorning my lashes

My sparkling eyes are

Called  enticing

The soundless movement 

Of my arms and hair 

Reminds them of seaweed

Of the salty wetness I come from

Now they feel they have 

Conquered me they sail  my

Heart like a huge ocean

Pirates and conquistadors

That robbed me of my songs

I do not have a say in this at all

I cannot tell about lies and treason

I have to live with what they make of me

I am the silent dancer without a tongue

I bleed my way from there to here

My feet forever caught in shoes

Red as the warm blood that now

Constantly relentlessly 

Runs out of my slashed veins

A poet's New Year's resolution

do 

not write 

shallow sallow 

stupid superfluous

silly sanctimonious sterile 

stale stanzas

do not

write 
  

write 

straight

simple sweet

soulful singular 

serious sound 

sequences

write

Deep sleep

In dreamless Hades

Soundless

Tasteless

Callous

Blind 

There is peace

For those frightened

By the harsh brilliance of life

Living with less

Than the bond of dreams

The share of promises

The mortgage of hopes

The IOU of love

Frees the mind of credit and debit

Makes room in heart's pockets

For the benefits from life's unexpected enterprises

Sitting myself

I sit here

I am bare

I sit here

I am unmade up

I am bare

I sit here

I am bare

I sit here

I am naked

I sit here

I am not hiding

I sit here

I am bare

I am unprotected

I sit here

I am anyone's prey

I sit here

I open up

I sit here

I am honest

I am naked

I am prey 

I am proud

I am what 

I am meant to be

I write 

I am myself

Bitch

He fed her just enough love
To get her hungry
Now she waits
Ears cocked
For her master's step
For the gnawed bones that
Fall from his cold indifferent hands

Strawberry

it hides

under leaves,

the idea 

of a fruit,

a thought 

nature has not

voiced yet,

a promise of 

sultry 

summers 

and

juices of 

unconceivable

sweetness.


Welcome to the Mediterranean

How they speak
With their hands
Their eyes
Not just their voice
As penetrating as
The ever present
Scooters
Which pierce
The luke warm
Nights and 
Sleep
As omnipresent as
The relentless 
Sun beating down
From a sky of
A blue 
So immoderate
It turns
White Skin
Bright red
There is no hiding
No escape
Here 
For a timid 
Northern soul
Still
The whole thing
Seems to be contagious
Nordic melancholy
And long winters 
Make susceptible
For all this
And thus many
Return
Drawn like bees
To honey 
Crusaders
In search of 
The holy grail
Of olive oil
Red wine
And passionate 
Living 

Hotel Room

I walk in
Instant 
Occupation
I leave marks
All around
Pots of
Cold cream
Whiffs of
Perfume
Lipstick 
Blood marks
On white
Terry cloth
I dent the
Freshly made
Bed with
My weight
Finally I 
Smoke a 
Cigarette in
A non-smoking
Room
My ultimate 
Sign of life
My silent
Rebellion
In an
Ultimately
Anonymous
Room 


Stillness

Experience 

Time

In it's 

Entirety

Take on

It's inevitable

Slowness

Leave the phone

Off the hook

The organizer

Empty of appointments

Suffer

The stillness

Of an empty weekend

Stop running!

Sit still!

Don't move!

Breath in!

Breath out!

Endure yourself

In the eerie

Process

Of dying by

The minute

Receive the

Gift of life in

Every single breath


lollipop dreams

sweet taste
on the 
outside
invites 
my exploring
adventurous
tongue
to lick
my longing
lips
to suck
to draw
out the
salty 
creamy
inside
to feed
my blind
passion
to satisfy
my burning
hunger 



Balls

Some men

Just have them

They don't need 

To brag about

Their size

Scratch them

To assure

Their existence 

Or spray the

World with

Testosterone

Like a horny 

Alley cat

They know

The art of

Refined 

Rutting calls 

And stay 

Away from

Stag fights

To draw a

Doe's 

Attention.

Attraction

Can lie

In gentle 

Mating

For females

Who are

Wise enough

Not to 

Choose a

Consort by

The penetrance

Of a roar

The potency 

Of a smell or

The size of

The horns



Dutiful

I should concentrate

On cleaning the kitchen

Mop the floor

Not drench it with

fluids of 

Unconsummated

Longing

I should sleep in

Innocently pink sheets

Ban any kind

Of red for a while

I should read dry

Manuals or

Cookbooks

Not dubious poetry

Or any books which 

Stir my imagination

Already running 

Away with me like

A bitch in heat

I should wear

Sensible shoes

On my sensible way

To a sensible occupation

Focus my mind on

What needs to be done

Distract my body 

From what it is screaming for



Simple

Some things

Are so simple,

Like driving

With the windows down

Music on,

My face bared

To the sun,

A feeling of

Unlimited

Brazenness,

That does not

Stop at 44,

So simple,

Plain,

Straight,

That I ask myself:


Do they deserve a poem?


And just when 

Poetic self-doubt

Is about to crush me

I hear Ray and Buck

Shout:



Yes, they do!


And I am saved

Once more.


Bio:

Ulrike Gerbig is a poet who lives and works in Germany.

Her first collection, Every Woman's Blues (Lapwing Publications, Belfast) came out in 2004.

Her second collection, Love in all the right places (Lapwing Publications, Belfast), appeared 
in May 2005.

Her work can be read in several magazines, e-zines and on websites like Hearts with Soul", 
"ICP" London Art, The Poetry Kit Magazine, Photoaspects, Electric Acorn, Unlikely Stories, 
Zygote in my Coffee, Pedestal Magazine, Dublin Quarterly , "Voices", "LitVision" and Out of 
Order, Open Wide, Mouseion  Aestethica, The Poetry Victims and Anthologies, like Voices of 
Israel, 2004/2005 and In our own words-a generation defines itself.

She was featured poet of the week on Poetry Superhighway in January, 2005, featured poet 
(with interview) in the April (2005) issue of Voices and featured poet in the May (2005) 
issue of Poetic Diversity. Magma Magazine is considering some of her poetry for publication 
in October 2005.

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