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KEYS TO THE CITY

I: A New Career In A New Town

II: Dream Life

III: Paintings As Prayers

IV: Late Summer Evening

POETRY

Rose Crowned Evenings

Moments Of Pure Ashtray

The Personalised Circus

Berlin Undressing

Blind Children On Western Streets

Lucifer Says He Won't See Me

Say

Absentee Note

Boy

Christmas Curtains

Fountains

July

Swans On The Surface

Girl Smoking On Balcony

Stained Glass Window

Terrible Vision

The Insurance Was WILD

The Sea's Smile

Van Gogh's Lights

The Disappointed Prince

SHORT STORIES

Tectonic Plates

Turkish Pizza

Cuddle Parties

A Night At The Circus

The Catch

Chekhov In Kreuzberg

A Stolen Dress

Two Contract Killers Get Arrested

My Uncle Dick

Death In The Cafe

Performing To The Curtain

Getting Past The Curtain

OTHER

La Traviata

Babylon Berlin

Living With Samuel Beckett:

An Anti Essay

MUSIC

CONTACT

BERLIN UNDRESSING

 

JUNE 2013

 

 

WAKING UP IS PAINFUL

 

Waking up is painful. It starts with screeching sunlight, recalled later as memory noise and always if only the world was how I saw it. How can you capture that most true feeling of unabashed freedom, your choices all in front of you, intimidating in their unknown potential - how incredible that is, and you can’t believe it, and you, who, for better or worse, are condemned to be conscious, strive for freedom only in the possibility of perhaps articulating purely your attempts to articulate what you think or feel might be true and pure.

You know, I can see the town undressing: I’m right in town now alright, thats why I’m here, I could if I wanted to, and I will, I don’t have any moments any more, I’m probably fantastically blurred, I don’t know if I like it, I’m not enjoying myself, I’m still very very conscious, but..I’m alive...Yes! Well:

Hurrying across the bridge, I realise this here is now never again,

the cook’s left the kitchen, the tomorrow’s are running out,

In broad day light I miss it of course, the clue, the hint, the chance of fleeting revelation, as my steps increase, I’m running out of words,

but I’ll play this game again later on tonight.

 

I can’t help looking back - (raised voices)

Berlin’s so depraved blowing disappointed kisses through the dusty clouds;

But I’m late for an appointment, so I cross the bridge,

and I guess that’s why its hard to send my mother the right postcard from

Berlin, Germany.

 

BERLIN UNDRESSING

 

Can you see the town undressing?

Baby Berlin dropping all her clothes.

Where all that’s good is thrown back in the air,

And all that’s bad lounges, does nothing, doesn’t care.

 

Berlin, it’s you, this century’s prom queen.

Can people with the earphones on still hear me?

 

Sniggers from the fellow impersonators in the back,

Beggars ask you for advice, not money –

No one listens, no one has any.

 

We began with an idea, a desire:

Can we see the town undressing.

And they told us that yeah sure thing she’ll undress, she always does, you know her, but then again, I -

I changed my mind. Why bother:

I was told we’ve all seen this before. I want something new. I want something now. Like those promises at the checkout lounge.

 

People at the front desk told me all about that Baby Berlin-dropping-all-her-clothes, (their words, not mine)

Where all that´s good is thrown back into the air, just thrown into the air,

About people caught wearing the finest leftovers Europe´s ever seen, Of those thirsty companies drooling with saliva,

Of culture, losing itself in never ending noise

Of addicted hands relieving aching cocks,

Of free opinions, repeating themselves

Of all the minds in ecstasy, out of their minds, going blind, glowing with future professions, free. feel so free out here.

In my great week of historical observation, I notice that from Europe’s balcony, the old survey the scene:

The world is arriving, and people are looking everywhere. Look out: The streets are filled with suitcases.

People queue outside the hostels, waiting for the funfair.

The geniuses are being lined up and given nametags.

Thousands of cruises, parties, tours and concerts are being frantically arranged for the next twenty years.

 A continuous and necessary orgy – that’s the plan. I shall be attending, I’ll see you there. Let’s arrive late.

And you know what my friend Gogo said about the Berlin Wall?

That change can come without blood!

“I´m not ready for this!” Berlin cries, and the audience laughs.

Why aren’t you laughing? Why am I not laughing? Look,

are we enjoying all this or not?

Music kicks back in.

Back to my history tutorial gone wrong: even the locals are interested, aren’t you? Raising your eyebrows outside the dead cafes and restaurants.  What on earth shall we do with you? Suggestions?

 “The rich businessmen are here too today in Berlin, awkwardly skulking the streets like chained birds, credit cards falling out of their trouser pockets on freshly graffited streets, huddled together in the faceless bars of Mitte, clumsily waving their folios, These are gentlemen and ladies of peacefully boarded flights from London and New York, turning occasionally to the leashed architects in the corner for aesthetic translation. Think what you want, but don’t ignore them.”

I pay for my midnight coffee then walk out and head to the great Eastern bridge for interruption, attraction, disruption and a little reaction of some kind…

I’m gonna spend my last ten eueros and watch it all go insane in Friedrichschain.

I hear they got circuses and chalets  where you can snort and fuck the nothingness away

Where undressing is not only allowed but actively encouraged

On the bridge I see the wasters and the junkies and the hipsters and  foreigners and the facade gives me courage.

I stick my card in the machine and watch it release what I need. God damn.

 

I can predict your future in this town. I’ll see you years later.

I can read your thoughts.

It’s a summer night, and your neighbourhood is improving.

But this part of town, it aint yet a playground.

As you walk, fake sausages, frightening doner and frozen vodka, Jaegermeister bottles are broken down on your town’s cycle lanes,

 

What else have I got for you?

To your left mid level gentrification, to your right overstaged demonstrations,

The police, the refugees, the gangsters, the scenesters and you saying to yourself, ‘how did I get here?’

Almost putting off the drug dealers crying in song, the crickets singing, the neighbour’s baby just won’t sleep, the animals at bay -  it was just all too much realitaet today,

So you better jump on the U8, mix the Mate with Vodka and seek oblivion, go on, do it.

We can make a plan for next week, next week if you know what I mean.

 

I come out of the station. They´re all still here, but there’s more of them, there’s a crowd, swelling, a mob, they’re yelling, fawning upon the city like a poor girl at a disco.

Smirking and pleased with herself, enjoying the attention, Berlin pulls her skirt up a little higher, another inch. Why not? But one day there'll be no skirt left…then what?

A drunkard yells, exactly, genau!