Berlin

By COCO DE CASSCZA

Then

it was a

place refracted

by the prism of history and

still in a kind of shock

of the past,

when

you never knew

the station you’d come into

Charlottenburg,

Lichtenberg,

or Zoo,

which

was something

to do with the old sectors,

the vectors of history not stopping

but bendable, after all, for now a vast

shopping mall with a station

somewhere in it is

the terminus of

every train.

What

else survived

has been lost under

other malls and hotels,

office buildings, a multipurpose

Holocaust memorial teenagers sunbathe on,

history leveled like the Tiergarten’s trees

after the war for warmth,

subsumed by consumers,

tourists, hipsters,

businessmen,

who

have papered

over everything

with money; for corporations,

governments, our collective consciousness

pisses on history with money

to make more money grow

like poppies on graves.

We lay waste our

past hours with

something new

to buy. Yes,

people

asked

once

Where 

is the Wall?

and even then

you would have to

point them from construction

to museums and

tell them

How

was the Wall

made, suffered,

imagined? would have

been the better

question,

Why

in a moment

did it vanish, and

Do we understand

anything

after

all?

 


Coco de Casscza has recently published poems in Rattle, Mudfish, and U.S. 1 Worksheets.

Photo of Berlin Wall by Flickr Creative Commons user Gonzo Carles.

Berlin

Related Posts

Kentucky farmland

64-West & KY State Fair

D.S. WALDMAN
And how, / if we keep going, pushing ourselves farther / from ourselves, we’d see, eventually, the blankness / we were one day born into. / I forget what you / told me after—I think it had something to do / with loneliness.     

Zebra finches on a branch

Anticipating, Zebra Finches

JOHN KINSELLA
Just below, a roo doe digs into the softest / soil it can find — avoiding rocks — to make / a hollow for itself and the joey heavy in its pouch; / it lifts, digs, turns drops lifts digs turns drops.

How Living Looks

ARIEL CHU 
The three of us—Frances, Jay, and I—live in this rain-slick city, concrete buildings stained with runoff. At night, the streets stretch like black pools, glossy with reflected traffic lights. We stumble around half-closed night markets with our snapped umbrellas and damp socks.