ref: In Vain from Berlin bhf. by Tihanyi Anna
The image: the whole tense obscure ocean
of a person (me?), sitting on a bed. A hotel room
or home? It is all the same, sparsely furnished, devoid
of the undulating familiarity one secretly craves, never
truly finds. Comfortingly ugly wallpaper. Luggage,
the disconcerting sight of rootlessness. Tightly packed.
The door, shut. The symbol: me, an ocean, for once
without an island? Embracing solitude like a master.
Strong as a mountain. Stepping over these stones
lightly, with the springing step of a quieter animal.
But the other, darker, corners of my picture frame:
the door, shut but not bolted; instead, precariously
balanced into compliance with an incongruous pile
of telephone sets, pastel coloured, last century. Yes,
the symbol: communication, my crackling voice
reaching out to yours through twisted black wire;
hearing but not seeing, hearing but not really
listening, are you? Are you listening? My voice
is bruised in the darkness, it is stained with light,
it has slithered under the warm carpeting to reach
your waiting ears, please tell me you are listening,
this is my last hiding place. My secrets are safe now.
My voice as a wonderful thing, a deceptive bridge, a
burnt ruin on a thundering river. A phone call, not a
conversation. A conversation, not my soul. You think
you see me, but my doors are shut. My voice wears
my clothes and parades around the streets. I sit, pick
my choice of pastel telephone set, pack and repack
my eternal luggage, watch the shadows in this room.
Light the lamps at dusk. Avoid the mirror.