For Birgit and Schleifenfeste
Stars which I looked at as a child,
when my heart was lonely,
why are you glowing coldly and indifferently today?
How often I have told you
what I wished for, what I was missing.
Today nothing is childís play any more.
My city has ceased to be my city,
and the one who was my friend isnít the same today.
We used to play with flotsam at the shore,
today I am flotsam,
and the shore is empty . . .
Paths that finally end blindly
in marshes full of shadows Ė
obediently I follow your course.
Accompanying me without a sound are those
looking for darkness and solitude.
I belong to them from now on.
And they are not what they really are.
The one who has power is hiding it unwillingly.
The one seeming so strong is broken inside,
and the one who was a child isnít one any more.
When the wind is rising, set off to the place where fish are singing,
where on rocky islands birds without wings are hunting,
where the waves are devouring shore and land hour after hour -
Pursue the foreign sails which will bring doom.
And within me something strange is lurking,
ransacking me and giving me no rest.
You who were my friend: release me and hold me!
I am wading through quicksand
who knows where . . .
Not myself anymore, but space and time,
filled with rain, shores, ghosts and you.
I will have changed, take me with you, I am ready,
nothing more than flotsam
in quicksand, and you
are flotsam within me.