There’s a few things she could learn from Berlin

view from my munich hotel room

view from my munich hotel room

the city brushes her teeth
with water from the sidewalks,
combs her hair
in one swift movement with the breeze
&hardly sees me
as i walk the stairs up to the Karlstor

she has coins&gargoyles in her pockets
laughs loud
as the fire juggler throws a flaming staff
glowing red against night’s arms

she wears a blue/white Dirndl, woolen stockings
&a Basilisk sits in the nest above her head,
pairs of doves pick bread crumbs
from her stretched out hands

she eats Weisswurst, Pretzels&sweet mustard
driPs yellow from her lips
&i’m not yet sure if i trust her,
strolling along lit-up paths, the christmas market
feathery angels on thin sticks

in a run-down asian restaurant,
i take out my sketching kit&trace her outlines,
the black man across from me
who doesn’t speak her language,
a few workers on their lunchbreak,
the thin woman with a leather skirt&bright red lips

later in my hotel room i cannot sleep
and sing a lullaby to all the chimneys that have
laid their heads to rest outside my window

she puts on a sleeping gown,

a pure white negligée
tight above her breasts
“just for the night” she says

&i sing on

for some more minutes


Gabriella has us write City poetry at dVerse today… pub doors open at 3pm EST


27 responses to “There’s a few things she could learn from Berlin

  1. Oh, i love your depiction of Munich, Claudia! You have made me see, smell, and taste it! Third and fourth stanzas are my favorite. Love the blue/white dirndl…….and crave some of the pretzels!

  2. You manage to convey the feelings of what Germany feels like at this time of year so well, Claudia! I love both Berlin and Munich…
    Did you use watercolor for your sketch? Off to my own class now.

  3. Oh, I love this poem…so touching opening…and then what she eats…wearing….esp. love lines when she ‘sing a lullaby to all the chimneys that have
    laid their heads to rest outside my window’ …very very nice…and she doesn’t like its gown ‘a pure white negligée’ ‘just for the night’ …hope so… x

  4. The images are stunning in their surprise.. To depict Munich as a lady with all that complexity.. The first lines just pulled me in, and how you continue with those painted words.. The mustard leaving stains, and brushing her teeth.. One of my favorites from you I must say.

  5. Oy, I love Munich, I’ll have you know – dirndl, Wurst, beer and all… (besides, they understand what I mean when I order Topfenstrudel). What could that settled, bourgeois domesticity have to learn from nervous, highly-strung, hungry Berlin?
    A beautiful picture of the city, though…

  6. Yes, C., this one is gem in your lexicon poetic crown, terrific imaginative POV, stirring imagery, still with eros extant, still very personal; do hug these words, like the lines /feathery angels on thin sticks/in a run-down Asian restaurant/.

  7. I like how when you turn to sketch her you turn to her people…because I think the people are what make a city…I also like the grit and edge you give her through the opening part of this….love the personification, but the intimacy witht eh city is what makes it for me…

  8. I like the personification of Munich. The line about your not sleeping and the chimneys laying their heads down is my favorite line. As always I remain in awe of your imagination. The sketch is really cute!

  9. personified the city from your personal perspective…it sounds a bit like a Walt Disney movie….I like ‘night’s arms’ the woman feeding the birds and the best is your singing lullabies to the chimneys. Love your leaning buildings 😉

  10. Nicely done. For the life of me, I could never get the poetic measure of a city, no matter how hard I tried. And yet the majority of poetry-readers live in cities. This is a thought I shall share – thank you for evoking it.