four generations on standby | a poem

girl in a window frame

between winter and violence

nature and man

Mother, help me out of this

nightgown, I need to survive

my mother needs to survive



I’m already there

I’m not here yet

and yet

and now

Mother, crawl, Mother, careful

walk over the roof

find the open window

she called her one day or night

the one time she opened up

shortly before her death

and said her biggest regret was

that she didn’t manage to murder her

say your prayers, Mother

everything fell into her



inside, deeply, irrevocably, silence

and I’d rattle and make noise

but no


no more


four generations

on standby

“The Lady of Shalott” by Walter Crane (1845-1915)

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