The world at distance

Nothing of much interest happens. When I leave the house it is still dark outside, when I come back it is already dark again. The cat sleeps. The crows and the squirrels fight underneath the walnut- tree. Here and then I collect a basket full of nuts, without the slightest idea of what to do with them. The grocer’s wife tells the usual gossip and most of it I forget while listening to her. I have been to the movies, but even Michael Fassbender, who stages McBeth does not move me much. I read the Irish Times more out of habit than of interest. My interest in shrill and loudly voiced opinion declines daily and I wonder how much time people have left to fill pages or sidelong paragraph’s with their most often boring opinion of the matters of the world. Don’t they have a garden to mind or a dog to take for a walk? I couldn’t care less. In the evenings I lay on the old-fashioned couch with the colorful quilt I brought many years ago with me from Kenya. Sometimes I read a few pages in a book, but most often the cat jumps on top of the book and falls asleep again. The world and I it seems are in a rather distant relation for quite a while now, not even for half an hour I fell in love this year and not even once in quite a few years I thought: what would be if? Maybe a time of greater silence and fewer words is just about to begin and maybe then a couple of years I would forget all my German. German the language I lost my heart to, did not bring me any luck and maybe I would sleep better if I would forget word after word, till I would sort out all German books in my shelves to give them away, no I would say, shaking my head, I don’t know any German, all the poems, the stories and tales, would be gone and even you, your voice and your words would be lost for me forever and ever and I could forget this love that began so many years ago the lap of my grandmother, who whispered in German into my ear. But for her counts the same true as for me: German never brought us any luck.

10 thoughts on “The world at distance

  1. oh dear. es ist ja nicht die sprache, oder? schau mal, von rose ausländer:

    Mutter Sprache

    Ich habe mich
    in mich verwandelt
    von Augenblick zu Augenblick

    in Stücke zersplittert
    auf dem Wortweg

    Mutter Sprache
    setzt mich zusammen


  2. I always believed languages were more than just words and grammar. If German is my mother tongue, Spanish might be my godmother tongue, who knows? . Over the years I developed a strong aversion to Italian (thanks, Mr Berlusconi, and the likes of you). I found Turkish boring and colourless, therefore I gave it up after only three weeks. I am always in love with French and am always turned down. English, with all its beauty, has become a language of business and work recently. Perhaps that’s why I don’t write well in English any more.

      • No, not yet. I want to, but I am too lazy at the moment. My English seems to be o.k. for my job, but I can’t make the words dance any more. I could, in a way, long ago. But it might come back, who knows.

  3. I gave up German many years ago, maybe/possibly because I was young and angry and wanted to get away from it (the country, the past, the anger, whatever) and for many many years I pretended it was gone and I was done with it. And then I returned, unwilling and reluctantly, and I am still more at a loss for words in German than in English. And like you, I know it’s all down to love.

  4. Usually I identify with every word you write, even when nothing in my experience matches yours. But, to my sorrow and shame, I’ve never learned another language, never felt as you have felt. I wish I had; it would make me a better member of the human race.

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