From this hill a telescopic eye might spiral down Spiegelgasse
Where Buchner moped, Lenin plotted,
Einstein scratched his ears, and Joyce
Walked off Finnegan's final drunk
And Tzara & crew unhinged this smug bourgeois town;
Emmy Hennings laughing...
A crevasse in the century's spine
A three-speech circus
Bordered by alpine encampments...
Transplanted Sequoia tower over the Zurichsee
While bankers walk three-abreast
Quietly closing deals
That might seal the fates of small nations,
Feigning neutrality, high above a cut-and-paste EU
Harboring gold wrenched from jews' teeth
Turning gold to lead...
Armies of swans black-eyed like bandits,
Coast the icy waves, storming the tourists
For pretzel-crumbs and muesli;
Trawling for signs of endearment...
A slip from the Uetliberg tram
Whose youthful enthusiasm entertains
Longings for freedom from the household duchy
And neighborhood bars that close at eight

The sailboats bob and keel
Close to the bust of Gottfried Keller
Who could have transmuted Romeo und Julia
Into a crass tale of a jaded New Yorker
And a working class girl from Tann,
Whose moist eyes tip the scales, descends the hill
That leads to a boarded-up well, or will
This mountainside oasis
Yet be poisoned, knifed in the heart
Like a Montague fallen on misdirected pride
Self doubt and delusive distraction,
The inequities of age?

From this point many paths lead down:
Through brambles and mudslides thick as Alaska;
The cliff-drop into suicide;
Or slow-graded steps the hale elderly tread;
A quick descent on rollerblades;
Or dirt curves wending detours to this lake
That now floats fall leaves turned to mulch...
There is security her, boredom
For the reckless adventurer
Time dawdles; deals are sealed
And passion springs quick like a dancer's twirl,
A glint in a soft grey eye
That asks only a giggling moment

Michael Carter
Zurich, 10/97

Uetliberg Logic
[Michael Carter/poem] [Brian Gormley/painting]

The Studio in the Street/The Street in the Studio (excerpt)
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Pete Cherches Blog
Up Is Up
Gallery Ariadne
Gormley Paintings

copyright 2007 Thin Ice Press
copyright 2007 Michael Carter
copyright 2007 Brian Gormley