Word for word

Issue 3/1992 | Archives online, Fiction, poetry

Poems from Falla (Eurydike) [‘Falling (Eurydice)’, Söderström & Co., 1991]. Introduction by Michel Ekman

a murderer who is running through the culverts of a hypermodern
high-rise complex asks desperately about possible ways out if he meets anyone,
he does not express himself symbolically,
in a locked room he writes poems no one understands, what he
writes is real –

you came to me at night
you asked me to do something,
I did it, for I am possessed, by you (fixed image!) in me, by 
myself	by your constant flight out of me, 	incomplete 	by my 
flight –

now you are changed: I love your fleetingness
your flight is in vain –

what’s done is done

I did exactly what you told me I was to do, word for 
with severed will fallen in the pull to finally, finally do
something, petrified in the cross-draught, a vacuum where everything happens
too quickly, and yet: where nothing changes
:life precipitated in the void	static
electrification 	but it was probably not that that led to 
her death, I am
only so afraid: it was terrible
precisely the fear, of consciously hurting someone, someone whom one liked very 
much	the passion of taking it to its painful conclusion, of sharpening
the torment –

in these days (it is very dark here) I have had a voluptuous
and giddying sense of falling –

how it happened: she kept her integrity; her integrity do you
hear, and her vulnerability, her tears ofen flowed ran down her cheeks,
through her face: she never cried
she gave herself, generously, to strangers, married men, adventurers,	her
girlfriends' boyfriends, to her girlfriends 
she loved, yes, she loved
she let them, oh so willingly, hurt her, but never for long at
a time
she never trusted anyone, she let herself constantly be deceived
a gentle laugh rested in her face, like a butterfly 
it fluttered over the whole of her body, repeated 
itself, like a happy childhood memory
she was like a lack, in herself
an ever present
a never deviating loss, with a gentle laugh

she was the sort of woman one could not endure, one might
destroy her after all?
she noticed it, she destroyed herself, herself

it was in blue spring twilight, she took off her sunglasses
: her eyes flashed (shimmer!), then she walked across the street, with
a gentle laugh threw her hair back, put on her sunglasses,
disappeared, a vertebra quietly floating away –

the following night I dreamed that I was forced to run a race
with her, and some others: but it was only I who had to
run – she, the others and you, too, stood completely cool, indifferent
and looked on as I exerted myself to the utmost, exhausted
myself, broke my body in a lonely struggle –
why was I running?–

why was I doing it?
imprisoned, in those impossible compromises
hounded, provoked, cold
those hard faces, taboo: ‘but-but buta-buta’
role-play roles rolls
no the game was on others’ terms, always on those others’
no the game was never mine
why was I making myself a victim?

was I? – I? – the sense of falling –
:wholly, coldly:
vol-uptuously, surrendering oneself 	between sleep and waking 

the victim dies,
freed from responsibility –
the victim as whore: offers herself –

am I dead now?	has the reflection succeeded? am I 
	her? have I destroyed her by 
	reflecting my soul in hers am I 
	her, for even a moment, dead?
here everything is as before
as though nothing had happened 
what has been lost, a hesitation
even more: the faithlessness, the distrust

we thought that we had nothing to lose
now we have lost her
now we have lost it

it was never a question of an experiment

the melancholy: a dependence never called into question, fucks like flight when the
tenderness became loss, farewells, dreamless nights
nothing to lose

wanton sketches 	language's irresponsible playfulness 
life's deep muteness 	unreported life
:as possibility
the possible insecurity	 ambiguous quagmire falsehood
and truth, at the same time, breaking 
thought's body into those
impossible compromises
:the faithlessness
I love this: wanton playfulness, the possible, the lack, 
in oneself
what we could not lose but
:to fall into what does not think
	does not remember 
	be reported

the desperation, and at the same time, the relief in her
eyes that reflected
my rooms, the last time she was here –

did she know her murderer?

she was found dead in the bed, bared
– no, it was not rape
but the cover was pulled to one side, the light dress split
open, and
her left leg bent in an unnatural, indeed, unseemly way
and her right hand lay at her mouth, as though she had been sucking her thumb –
had she uncovered herself?
she died of a wound to the heart –

they say she had had contacts with an anarchist terrorist
group in Bologna, that she had taken part in shady political actions
during her time in Turkey –
(and what is politically shady? to put it like that sounds shady, like an attempt
to explain it away)
:perhaps: for she never recovered from her awakening from
the seventies’ disappointed dreams, did she?

they say that she sold herself: her soul, her body?

Translated by David McDuff


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