I: A New Career In A New Town

II: Dream Life

III: Paintings As Prayers

IV: Late Summer Evening


Rose Crowned Evenings

Moments Of Pure Ashtray

The Personalised Circus

Berlin Undressing

Blind Children On Western Streets

Lucifer Says He Won't See Me


Absentee Note


Christmas Curtains



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


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


La Traviata

Babylon Berlin

Living With Samuel Beckett:

An Anti Essay





October 2018

Collaboration with photographer Laura Cherry Grove



And there’s nothing like my opera:


Mirage Halls everywhere, Berlin, City of Mirage Halls, Deutche Oper, elderly West Berlin people tonight are the best-dressed folks on the continent.

With wine you make promised appointments, general chitchat, desirous and unflinching. The performance will start soon. The velvet red curtains cloak the stage like spoilt storm clouds.


- Scratching like eternal fingernails, like her goddamned violin.

And the token shrieks of spirit she made to make it seem like we were intelligible in that very moment. Violetta is in love again, Alfredo complains about being a buffoon. Verdi’s successors croak with strings. It’s over the top: use the binoculars and take a closer look. You feel things, great unintelligible things.


Remember how you could detect ‘just a touch’ of incoming autumn in the chilling summer air, the people of the street you’d look upon, and the people in the buildings, these grey-faced gentlemen, these full named ladies would become red, brown, black, blue, heavily awash. Grey faced gentlemen in the afternoon would continue as before.


Nasca il giorno, o il giorno muoia,
sempre lieta ne´ ritrovi,
a diletti sempre nuovi
dee volare il mio pensier


And certain ticketholders have smoke salmon on toast waiting for them during the intermission. I buy myself a pretzel and swan around with a Cinzano, and pretend it’s 1978.

Don’t caress my chin like perfect mothers do to the perfect misbehaving child, that’s not enough for me, and it doesn’t help my mood either. Unrequited love in 18th century Paris. A whore with tuberculosis drives men crazy, and finally herself. Then the curtains leave us in the dark again.

Exit West Berlin. Follow me as I pass from west to east, north to south. That lonely walk camouflage, you get it, I know, poor families acting out, you know them. Rich, I know, spoilt? I did not know. Richly poor, how about that. Emptied by ancient melodrama, the city fills you up with junk again. Presumably, they got nothing, you got nothing, we got nothing, hey pay attention, someone even lobs a bottle, it nearly hits you, and it smashes, hits a passing bus, you may have been on the bus, and then the little brats start shooting fireworks and crackers out the window.

Your friend: take me out of here, you: I will.


Can you enjoy yourself? Yes, it eases the pain.


God knows how many are suffering whilst the rest rejoice.


Sempre libera degg´io
folleggiare di gioia in gioia,
vo´che scorra il viver mio
pei sentieri del piacer.



For more of Laura Cherry Grove's Photography, click here