For how long may you have your poems?

(A suite written at the nephew´s coming-of-age)
For how long may you have your poems?
The golden tornado runs through the summer house,
hovers for a few seconds,
puts the question, and whoosh - is out on the lawn,
up the slope, down the slope, into the water, 747 strokes,
is rubbed by mother, praised by father
falls asleep clutching the Action Man
wakes up to another day with new enigmas to create
So one summer passes, then another and over again
inbetween winters, with mittens lost, icicles falling on citizens,
school in school out body grows heavily
pimples shining, pounding, looks the other way,
escapes into lonely chamber headset on,
mouse click destroying monsters with surgical precision,
all the while we bang on door, call into inert backside
- Come out of that miserable dungeon!
And one bright day in spring the child lumbers out of his den,
finds himself new speed streaks, waxes his hair,
ready to meet the world with a steady look and a reliable hand shake,
meanwhile in the summer house the Question
keeps creeking in the timbers,
no ice winters or mould attacks can disinfect
the inability to provide a plausible answer:
For how long may you have your poems?
For how long may you have your poems?
Shut it, kiddo! If I´m not allowed my poems,
then who should be allowed theirs?
Someone with a larger room?
Higher ceiling? A more refined atmosphere?
A gigantic library with scrolls in glass showcases,
guards in tight suits and/or swelling biceps,
Mr Magoo-looking librarians in white gloves
shuffling about discreetly on leather soles against the marble floor
Every day at noon heavy doors open
and two as springy as they are shallow
Afghan dogs undulate into the hall
to announce the arrival of the poet
I enter rolling in a wheelchair,
no - on skateboard, you´d like that -
cap turned backwards, hollering mooore poetry
here´s lots more poetry!
The librarians do their soft-shoe shuffle,
I pull up a memory stick, hi uncles,
here´s forty MB ultra poems
along with background, moves, 3D,
reviews and signed contracts!
The stick is laid upon a blood red velvet cushion
and with a huff and a puff tucked into the safe
behind the masterly fool-the-eye fabricated
leather bound door with golden letters spelling:
A choice of the world´s best poetry
For how long may you have your poems?
Let´s see - with a bit of luck
I may keep them until Thursday,
that´s when the Poetry Collector
comes along with his great big fine meshed net.
As always I have tried scattering my poetry in the wind,
halfheartedly hoping that Destiny or Chance
shall determine wheather my poem be caught by
human hand or eyed by human mind
and thus enter one being´s emotional, glandular
or even parasympathetic system.
This would have caused connections.
Can´t say exactly how, it´s something you feel, though,
a snap, sort of, and there´s your connection.
It has to do with electricity.
In a positive way, a positively charged electricity
makes connections between systems,
organs aware of one another,
two bodies aware of one another,
eye meets eye, tooth meets tooth,
ouch! they cry with laughter:
There you are: A connection.
I would like to humour myself
of having caused this with my poetry.
But every Thursday the Poetry Collector
comes along with his great big fine meshed net,
through which no unnecessary words
may slip.
When the Poetry Collector has dashed about
for a while with his great big fine meshed net
in which he catches all unnecessary words
put together in vanity and grandiose self-sufficiency,
he empties these in the Container,
a procedure much reminding of how
the municipal pickup truck picks up the
light blue bin bags containing the black bags
containing the unloved droppings of our beloved pets,
which, contrary to poems are a necessary evil,
droppings included in the purchase,
they are counted in the same cycle as love,
obedience, affection, belonging, identity, status,
our basic needs, not available for everybody,
therefore all the more desirable,
so worthy of struggle, if not for me, then for my children,
to write this takes time,
to read this takes less time,
then should it be such a big deal to keep it?
How long may I have my poems?
For the time that I am allowed to have a poem,
I am certainly grateful.
Particularly at first, with the embryo -
or even before, as the twinkle in my eye,
this tiny thing protects me,
if the process had been filmed it would show
how the thick cuticle closed, shutting out
all that crowded on from the outside,
Smiling inwardly I want to command
youngsters on the bus:
Leave your seat, I´m with poem!
That is to say, if I make it as far as to a bus
before the poem is removed,
a violent nausea then it is gone,
might as well forget.
But some are allowed to grow for a while,
line by line, much too easily, really,
a little poetry in the poems wouldn´t do any damage,
a slow ripening makes sweeter melons,
strong, impeccable,
the embryo is teasing me,
I don´t mind, I have been seen, understood,
seen through - and thoroughly all of me
now scattered in the wind.
Of course, there is no way you´re not losing your poem one day
Whether it gets caught in the Poetry Collector´s net or not,
it is bound for oblivion, without oblivion
soon an unmanageable chaos
would spark and spin
as on an old grammophone,
the kind music used to come from,
music happens to be the daycare of poetry,
looking after the small and cute ones,
so that they won´t get stuck in the mud,
lose their wellies, music keeps the poems
in little cabinets with name tags
and see to that the right piece gets to go with
the right author, on the bus back home
you can sing its lines over and over again
and they will stick, hook on, be tied to
the everyday life of ordinary people
everyday emotions even,
you experience recognition, again causing connections,
so dare one believe, may we please, please may we
keep this moment for yet another moment?
The outlook on having poems is obviously
limited, shielded with blinkers.
With growing up comes the ability to accept,
fall away, deflect, seek new paths,
for a brief moment see yourself as
a frisky spring brook, look - a furrow,
I shall lead myself out of the middle -
and be allowed other people´s poems.
Other people´s poems leave a wholehearted impression.
A solid, wholehearted thought, carved with goose blood,
spiced with salt from Brittany in low tide June,
dried with moss from the Hebrides,
we are talking classics here, but the most important is your heart,
your heart must be whole, the broken one has lost
its ability to connect, you want to connect,
you need a full time heart, with a flow.
Cluts, splinters itchy navels, ear wax and static from the old grammophone -
there comes the Collector and pulls the plug
to your computor. So so easily
it may be used for writing poetry.
And yet, should I dare have a poem tucked away,
what then?
There´s the nail beat on its head, my friend,
little people need firm boundaries,
how could you respect an auntie who stretches rules,
it´s bad enough that I smell of profanity,
snuff and snoring and late mornings,
it is of utmost importance that children
be prevented from experiencing
grown up´s double agendas,
what if you were sat under a cork oak,
useless, mumbling unintelligibly,
increasingly incapable, thinking it was all good.
But, fine, try to steal away with a couple of nifty phrases,
into the secret house and shut its door,
let it stay inside for a few years,
then see how it has undergone the fermentation,
with a nice crust and precious shine,
or will you be punished with red hot ears and remorse,
donkey´s tail and a silly cone on your head.
Few people HAVE poems,
nota bene, have a FEW,
for LONG, not FOR long,
what are YOU having?
Have you HAD enough?
There you HAVE it!
You MAY do this!
Happy the bride
that the sun shines on to-day!
The right to have, to own,
is of no importance
as long as there is room enough,
but if you´re running short of oxygen
there is no way around it,
not even for an old hippie/slacker
as your auntie.
Do you really want to have your poem -
then eat it.
That is self-evident,
have it and eat it,
swallow and digest
bother and smother,
inspire and expire.
A poem is never as brilliant,
multifaceted, loud,
hopeful, capable and -good,
as when it is newly written,
after a mere ten minutes
it begins to fray, then tear
into clotted wounds,
you erase frantically,
the computor is eternally patient,
should you against all odds still be somewhat pleased
and let go of your poem into the wind,
then be sure to note that now
it has very little in common with its origin,
what it had at first.
Undeniably, a copious amount of poetry
has survived its authors,
there is reason to suspect
this to be the very purpose or at least
the hopeful ambition behind their making.
However, a dead poet is no less dead
than a dead copper
who, according to the villain,
not until now is a good copper,
but is he a poet?
Perhaps he is, but he cannot have his poems,
A, he´s dead,
B, it is the poems who are having him,
there is no proving he ever existed,
but now he exists in a poem a
nd long after his fictious death
he is still causing connections and
mysteries of all kind.
So, finally, only one bit of all this
is left to dissect: You.
How long may You have Your poems?
They may have kept a low profile
for some time, waited for you to come of age,
but for the love of god, don´t use
your coming of age when you write,
use your goldenness,
where the breathtaking combinations are,
the feints, the tackles and the rattle in the net,
just as back then:
How long may you have your poems?


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