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Location: Vienna, Austria, Austria

Sunday, November 13, 2005

not a poem

(for a girl who won't have any poems written about her)


just to keep things short: this isn't a poem. no way.
it doesn't rhyme. it doesn't use any metre, or rhythm,
or melody of speech. it has no stanzas, or anything, that might be
expressed in numbers. each word stands for itself, entirely free.

try as you may, you won't find anything to distinguish
this from prose. it has no beat. you can't sing it
(that's saying something nowadays!), and even in print
it won't look like anything special. that's to say, no one

can recite it under your window, with or without moonshine,
nor write it on coloured paper and mail it to you,
nor, when he is alone, press it to his heart to forget
how much he misses you, or read it to himself, nor hang it

on the wall. all these are things people do with poems,
some people at least, but it cannot be done with this.


this, being no poem, contains neither metaphors
nor embarassing similes. none of that flowery language.
that's to say, you can be really sure that nobody will
think of your eyes as resembling petals of the blue

lotus (nymphaea caerulea), nor of your hair as dark bees' wings,
nor call your neck a pillar of the ivory tower, nor address ears
or other parts of your body as foreign flowers or fruits.
poets do that kind of thing. here, there is no question of it.

each word means the same here as in everyday speech. thus,
when i say "strawberry" or "albatros" or "lily pond",
"wine" or "tears", i just mean the red fruits, the seabirds
and the liquids. don't you go thinking of anything else.

there are no descriptions here, either. neither of unmown meadows
nor of swimming in the sea in summer, nor yet of a sunset,
that would make your cheeks and arms look still more precious
and glow like molten gold. there are no such things,

and not being poets, we need not invent them, but may
simply be content with the bare truth. - all the things i don't say here
i do not refuse to say because they wouldn't be true,
but because this is no poem - we want to do this matter-of-factly,

because that is one of the worst things about those poets
(except being unintelligible): they hardly ever stick to their facts.


writing no poem is terribly easy. it neither calls for
asceticism, nor, on the other hand, for excess. one need not
study or read anything, or wait for inspirations.
in short, one needn't do anything at all. this being

no poem, it is not bound by any conventions, nor obliged to
be original. writing no poem, i can say what has been
said a thousand times, or be silent. on the whole, writing
no poems has only advantages. for instance, one needn't

produce any effects on people, sting them or tickle them
or play on their heart strings, or intoxicate them. no poem
will change nobody's life. some people spend all their life
reading no poems, and life passes just as if they didn't.

poems usually finish with a flourish. this, being none,
doesn't. it just stops anyw


Blogger Åsa said...

he he

7:03 AM  
Blogger Åsa said...

But its still devided into verses

7:04 AM  
Blogger caru said...

oh, it isn't. i just started a new line every time i thought one was looking rather full *whistling a harmless song*

you know, she really does have the lotus-blue eyes, and all that... and she claimed no one had ever written a poem for her, and she didn't want to read any... so i didn't write any.

and she was pleased, difficult girl that she is ;-D

12:00 PM  
Blogger Kayos63 said...

That was one of the most beautiful things I've ever read... This plus your taste in women, my esteem for you grows, a thousand respectful bows to you memsahib(in cheesy middle eastern accent bowing low to the ground and almost kissing the desert sands)

(got here from Asa's blog)


10:32 AM  
Blogger Åsa said...

very sweet
I love it!

12:50 PM  
Blogger Åsa said...

She is a lucky girl

12:51 PM  
Blogger caru said...

thanks for all the fishes :-)


she's sweeeeeeeeeeet... you'd like her :-)

12:32 PM  

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