After arriving back from Berlin, I’ve been left with many warm memories.
While over there, I wrote down some quick impressions as I went. These may become something more in due course, maybe not. They may simply remain just as they are. Travel jottings.
So far only one poem has come from that visit.
foxes or squirrels
On your dress, little girl; Madchen; or are they
Red squirrels; rotes Eichhornchen?
Such queries and aspects,
viewpoints and debate,
as her family and I sit in a broiling sun
by the Baltic
eating herring; silver and black and grey
as a storm in the sky.
I am eating the language of silver sky
and sea on this last day of summer; Sommer;
eating the language
my granddaughter speaks.
She does not care
what they are; foxes or squirrels; Fuchs or Eichhornchen;
it is simply her favourite dress,
for now anyway, as she eats her potato cake
with apple sauce and hardly ever looks at me
as I drink her in with my eyes.
I am her ‘English’ grandmother
the one she needs to think twice
before speaking to in that language, English,
that does not flow as fast for her as Deutsch.
She loves me.
One day she will know this.
Later, her uncle settles it.
They are squirrels on her dress,
see the little acorns; die kleinen Eicheln;
each squirrel holds?
Kay McKenzie Cooke