translated from the German by Chris Michalski
direct intervention in memory—
we wear gloves our fingertips
light up supposedly familiar
appearances and something
that doesn’t quite belong that’s a little
indifferent becomes clear.
that must be the day about which
everyone thinks something different.
it showed how easily bad
luck can get started overhang weeds in
an otherwise well-controlled communication.
how in spite of dirty leaves you can still
slide over the frozen water.
the lake got smoother with every new layer
frozen over and over. you saw
the iceskaters from the house understood
their difficulties hat tied over the ears
over the skin—all this you saw.
all that’s left
is to make the
Silke Scheuermann, widely considered one of the most talented and visionary German poets of her generation, was born in Karlsruhe in 1973 and now lives in Frankfurt am Main. She is the author of three poetry collections—Der Tag an dem die Möwen zweistimmig sangen (The Day the Seagulls Sang in Two Parts, 2001), Der zärtlichste Punkt im All (The Most Tender Place in the Universe, 2004), and Über Nacht ist es Winter (Overnight It’s Winter, 2007)—a story collection, Reiche Mädchen (Rich Girls, 2005), and a novel, Die Stunde zwischen Hund und Wolf (The Hour Between Dog and Wolf, 2007).
Chris Michalski’s poetry and translations have appeared in Poetry International, Puerto del Sol, The Marlboro Review, Spoon River Poetry Review, and elsewhere. He is the author of a chapbook, paper route and other poems (littlefishcart press, 2007), and his manuscript of selected poems by Silke Scheuermann, “Voyages over Snow,” is looking for a publisher. (1/2009)