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This is Jacket 16, March 2002   |   # 16  Contents   |   Homepage   |  Catalog   |    

Johannes Beilharz: four poems

Isn’t it nice

when your computer talks to you?

Like just now,
when a smooth female
anchorperson voice
told me in High German
that printing had begun.

If only that smooth
female anchorperson
were in this room now!

This room with its disorder,
piles of books, muddy
coffee cups, rock crystal
chunks (that have not been
bathed and rinsed in months),
its apple cores, 3M
stickers and dust and

She has funny cars

There are a few Jefferson Airplane song titles that have nothing to do with what the songs are about. This was and still is très chic.

In some cases even the songs themselves have nothing to do with what they are about, and these songs are the ones called obtuse by the critics. This is the ultimate in chiquism and defines a border which cannot be overcome.

The band members that wrote these songs wholeheartedly agree with the critics in statements that imply they remember the details surrounding these songs only very dimly. Children that turn into strangers once the umbilical cord has been cut.

I dreamed about Phoolan Devi last night

The attacks on the police and army she staged
were so successful because she introduced the
Finnish-built Aavaristo machine gun which was
extremely effective and also so distinctively
loud that it clearly indicated to the authorities
that she and her gang really meant business.

Women and Borges

Pero es que Borges vivió casi toda
su vida con amores desdichados y
con amores muy intensos.
                 A. Bioy Casares


Gives me the impression of unspeakably
filthy acts, far worse than getting spat
in the face
                  Premeditated, slow, plentiful


But there’s plenty of unspeakable
in everyday married or unmarried
      The sacrament of marriage

Daring games: He, physically
more powerful, willpower strangled
by spider woman’s stare

perfectly willing and able
to dole out cruelty at the workplace
and even shag the secretary
or God knows what wretched female
except for that tyrannical flower
of womanhood given away by
priest with gold ring and brimborium

photo of Johannes Beilharz

Johannes Beilharz writes in German and English, paints and translates. He is the founder and editor of an online literature and art forum ( and a literature editor for Open Directory Project ( He lives in Voehringen, Germany.

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