Freitag, 31. Mai 2013


das sollte ich tun             täglich
um sechs uhr aufstehen meditieren
yoga machen und dann an den
schreibtisch nein besser um fünf
uhr denn sonst stehen die anderen
auf bevor ich sitze bevor ich am
schreibtisch sitze ich sollte täglich
schreiben meditieren und yoga machen
allein die disziplin wird etwas bewirken
mehr noch wenn ich dabei freundlich
bleibe vor allem zu mir selbst zu anderen
auch auch zu anderen sooft wie
möglich in den garten fahren allein
allein auch über nacht und dort der
angst bis auf den grund gehen nicht
auf den leim der nachtigall lauschen auf
dem grund der angst findet sich eine
menge der wahrheit mit der man
auftauchen kann zum licht und
dann den alltag nicht vergessen
putzen wäsche abwasch nicht ungern
nicht im widerstand sich verheddern
sondern freundlich zu mir selbst zu jeder
tasse zu jeder schmutzigen unterhose auch
denen der anderen vor allem diesen
gegenüber könnte ich freundlicher sein

das sollte ich lieber lassen     täglich
den alltag und mit ihm mein ganzes
leben mit jenem hadern und zweifeln
zu betrachten als wäre es der testlauf
als käme noch die premiere meines
wahren Lebens aus den Kulissen 
das tratschen all die energie die ich
verschwende indem ich mich im leben
anderer tummele wie ein fisch im trüben
wasser fischend im trüben nichts kann
dabei heraus kommen das für irgendwen
von nutzen wäre jemals und dann das
widerstand leisten gegen jeden ungebetenen
gast jede frage jede bitte man glaubt ja nicht
was einem alles so ungelegen kommen kann
an einem ganz normalen tag jeden tag mitten
in der stadt im eigenen leben stören die
anderen die menschen und das wetter einen
auf aus einer eingebildeten ruhe und darüber
werde ich ungeduldig und wütend und zynisch
auch auch das wäre zu unterlassen wenn
irgendmöglich am besten gleich denn jeder
weitere atemzug investiert in diese aktivitäten
ist eine verschwendung meiner selbst

© Susanne Becker

Mittwoch, 29. Mai 2013

Before I was born/Bevor ich geboren wurde

Before I was born
I knew you.
It was a bone thing,
rooted so deeply
in my existence,
that it was me
this you, more or less.
Between the lines
we sat side by side
on a cloudy chair
and knew each other
like soul sister and brother -
or more.

Who knows?

Bevor ich geboren wurde,

kannte ich dich.
In meinen Knochen
atmete eine Gewissheit,
so tief verwurzelt
in meinem Sein,
dass ich es war dieses du,
mehr oder weniger
zwischen den Zeilen
saßen wir Seite an Seite
auf einem Wolkensessel
und kannten uns besser
als Seelenbruder und - schwester -
oder mehr.

Wer weiß?

© Susanne Becker
Freundlicherweise gestattete mir Armin Staudt, eines seiner fabelhaften Fotos für diesen Post zu benutzen. Herzlichst danke ich!!! Courtesey of Armin Staudt I was allowed to use one of his fabulous photos!!! Peppers as soulsister and -brother on a cloudy chair!! I like it!

Dienstag, 28. Mai 2013

my real name

my real name might just be
i am not here
i am not there
lost in this tiny space
between the words
i utter to create a fantasy
i call (my) life
how courageous
how out of my mind
can i really become
i am not here
not even as a storyteller
the stories tell themselves
I am like a tool
hanging my entire life
with words onto a laundry line
during a wild wild storm
my laundry is helpless
afterwards everything is
scattered throughout
a landscape too huge to ever
consider travelling
like a prairie with
nobody home

© Susanne Becker

Samstag, 25. Mai 2013

I do love spiders

spiders grow in my cheeks
too deep to breathe
and spread their long, their thin
legs out of my mouth
across my face
all the way to my ears
to both sides

a golden net quivering
in the air I breathe in
and out

you have to be real careful
you have to be attentive
to see them
at all
tiny spiders
wandering all the way down to my heart
they are

a golden net shimmering
in the sunlight I bathe in

you don’t know me
about me

as if I were a different person
two different persons
too many different persons
to count
I am not you

nothing to read or write
just this heart open wide
and its spiderweb

© Susanne Becker

Dienstag, 21. Mai 2013

How to spend a perfect day in Berlin

It all starts with sleeping late. I can not sleep longer then, say, 9ish or so. I used to be able to sleep until 1 in the afternoon, but that is ancient past and no need to shed a tear about it. Over! Basta! I fear I am entering the phase my grandmother used to call: "I am old, I don't need sleep anymore." And besides the reading glasses I need now that is the second real depressing thing about aging.

Well anyways, the perfect day in Berlin old or not is still like this: I wake up at 9ish, I go to the kitchen, I make myself a cup of strong coffee (nobody talks to me, thats mandatory, everything else is, well, less perfect, sorry husband, sorry kids) and a slice of bread with my selfmade strawberry jam or rhabarb jam or something like it and go back to bed. Because the perfect day for me always starts with breakfast in bed. I can stay there for hours and read and write in my journal, get lost in my very deep and profound thoughts and solve the one or other essential question, nobody else asks in this universe deprived of any sense. I read May Sartons Journal of a Solitude. Great btw! About truth, gardening, writing...she really shows herself and thats pretty much what I want from a good writer, from a good book. I am too old for pretentious stuff. Thats one of the good things about aging. With those reading glasses you see right away what is true and what is pretentious stuff!
I stayed in bed until 11 and then I looked for a nice summer outfit, because it was HOT HOT HOT last sunday and I went to the Nowkoelln Flowmarkt. I always find something good there: last sunday a skirt for 3€ in dark red with embroidered flowers on it. Its really elegant and yet Kreuzberg and yet me and yet...The Flowmarkt sometimes also happens in the Prinzessinnengärten, which was the case on sunday. Then its called Kreuzboerg not Nowkoelln. Just check them both out. I never went to any of them without spending just a little money and finding the one or the other wonderful treasurous thing. I mean I spent 7 Euros last sunday and got a skirt (as mentioned above), a beautiful shirt for my older daughter and a badger family for my younger daughter (to supplement the gorilla family, the fox family, the elephant family, the icebear family, the brown bear family - and yes, thanks for asking, she is the one loving all animals!). They also have great food and wonderful music.

Since the Nowkoelln Flowmarkt is close to Friedelstraße it was time for me to finally discover one of the best iceparlors in town, Fräulein Frost. I had read about it so numerous times, for example here (where btw I find the best ideas how to spend my money on great food around Berlin), that I felt like totally left out. I ate cherry joghurt, rhabarb and oreo cookies ice with whipped cream and it was fantastic and not too sweet and there were at least 23 other ice cream flavors I would have loved to taste but could not because I was soooo stuffed. I will be back. I swear. Friedelstraße 38 in Neukölln. It is super crowded there, lots of children, lots of parents. My cousin had their spaghetti ice with homemade strawberry sauce. She said she never had a better one, ever. And she is from the rhineland. You'd think she should have tasted good icecream in Cologne before with all their original italian iceparlors there, but she said: no, not that good!

I slowly went back into my neighborhood, back to bed to get over my full icecream stomach, too tired to read or have profound thoughts, I simply napped (an afternoon nap, undisturbed, is also mandatory for a perfect day).
But you  can not live on icecream alone (which is a shame), so as soon as my stomach felt emptier again I started cooking a delicious spring minestrone with my older daughter. While we were waiting for it to be ready I tried the Crow again, in the middle of our kitchen, and I am becoming better and I decided: yoga is not about getting my fingers to my toes but about the way it takes me to get there. As I said before: its all about that the impossible is possible.
The soup is with asparagus and peas and vegetable broth and brown rice in it. The recipe is from this book and somehow perfect in combination with the one or other yoga posture.
The weather was really good and the soup wasn't such a burden to my stomach and extremely yummy.
I had not been swimming all year long, which is unusual for me. We had years when I hit the first lake sometime in early April. The water would still be cold, but it would be good. This year somehow it didn't happen, the weather was like in Siberia and I am just not too fond about hitting a hole in the ice and swimming like some maniacs will do. But the ice has melted a little while ago, even here, even in my homeland of siberia, and it wasn't raining everyday, which was also quite nice. Sunday it was HOT HOT HOT but I did not feel like driving all the way to some lake. Instead I decided to go to the Prinzenbad. When I go there I always go at 5.30 and pay the so called late-swimmer-prize. Right now they close at 7 but beginning with june they will close at 8 so either way I get enough swimming and sun bathing and french fries in an almost empty pool. I love it when I come and most other people start to leave. Each time I am among the ten last people to leave and thats, when Prinzenbad is most beautiful and feels like a true vacation spa or something. The only shadow (shall I call it this?) was that the security people again did not want to serve cocktails to me and my cousin. That would have been the ultimate trip. I think I will make it my mission this summer to convince them to have a little bar up on the security glass tower, just for me and some of my special friends. Its a great outlook, from which they shout via megaphon to teenagers behaving badly in the water or on the slide "You with the black hair, yes YOU, stop trying to drown your little sister and get your ass over here")- french fries and sun downer in an empty Prinzenbad, served by security guards in white shorts. Perfect ending for a perfect day.

© Susanne Becker

Mittwoch, 15. Mai 2013

some more favourite or just interesting books on writing

I read books about writing, its techniques, the process, writer's journals, books with prompts or exercises et cetera all the time. Here are nine I read recently or am still reading. Not too bad actually.
  • Barbara Abercrombie, A year of writing dangerously I admit I am just the type who likes books with daily exercises in it, be it for writing, be it meditation, insight, whatever, I like sitting in bed in the mornings with my cup of coffee and reading my prompt for the day and taking out my notebook and get started. Barbara Abercrombie showed me again how important it is to write from your heart and soul and not considering some market or opinion of others
  • Brenda Ueland, If you want to write to me is a book about integrity and writing. I found it at a time when I was rather unhappy because I felt I didnt have it in me to write successfully. Reading it gave me back the courage to just write and not think about money or success. At some points I found it old-fashioned - which is not bad at all. After all, she wrote it many moons ago.
  • Dillard, Annie, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek Is a book that makes me want to spend a year in my garden and write about everything there, every cherry, every bird, every bit of digging and planting I do in detail. Is it a book about writing? Is it a book about nature? Or is it a book about everything that matters? For me it is all of this. Highly recommendable. The read is a meditation in itself.
  • Judy Reeves, A Writer's Book of Days Some of the exercises are rather dull to me, just like some of the ideas she communicates in the book were all not new. I was wondering if she stole from Natalie Goldberg. A lot sounded familiar. Anyway, I am the exercise writing type of person as I mentioned, so I use this book nonetheless - I've been using it for the past 3 years, since my superhero husband gave it to me for christmas.
  • Bonnie Goldberg Room to write At first I didnt like it so much. But after a while it actually grew on me and now I try to do an exercise from it as often as possible. 200 little invitations to write, to get you started, to get you to dig into your material just a little bit deeper, to get your faucets all running. I am the type of writing person: I can unravel a poem from my inner world just because of such an exercise. I am very easy to get started. If I know there is a prize to win with a short story about a beauty queen stopping at a gas station (which actually was the case a few weeks ago) I do this story and send it in. I ususally don't win but the exercise in itself is of course already a kind of win. For me it is good to have somebody tell me what to write and when to deliver it. I never missed a deadline once.I never did not write a text required. Writer's block was never my problem.
  • Phyllis Theroux, The Journal Keeper is a beautiful book about journaling, writing, aging, life in Virginia. Since I am a journal keeper who lived in and loves Virginia madly I love this book for many personal reasons, not the last of it being that I feel lately I am  aging too. It is deeply spiritual and besides showing the everyday life of a writer and teacher, it asks and tries to answer a lot of questions about life and its meaning. Last but not least it contains a beautiful love story.
  • Smallwood et al, Women on Poetry: Writing, Revising, Publishing and Teaching is an interesting compilation of essays concerning all kinds of aspects considering writing poetry - to be frank I had expected a more professional or maybe academic approach and this is more about very personal accounts by not sooo famous female poets. But I still like the book and it is a treasure box of addresses, ideas, inspiration and suggestions. Some of the essays really speak to me while others leave me completely bored. I think it will be one of those book I will read in again and again, whenever I feel like it and an essay which doesn't mean anything now might talk to me next year. It is not a book I would read beginning to end in one setting.
  • Sarton, May, Journal of a Solitude is another, the title says it: journal, containing descriptions of Sartons everyday life in her house in Maine, her attempts on diving deep enough to write, struggling with depression, anger, negativity, nature descriptions and those of other people. I am very interested in the journals of writers lately, especially those who chose solitude as a nourishing element for their writing. I feel, I am much related to this mindstate and reading their words nourishes me. I also feel it is good to read honest accounts of other human beings as often as possible. I am so tired of every form of pretension.
  • Carolyn G. Heilbrun Writing a Womans life about women finding their own quest, their wn voices in life and writing. Still very much  worth reading, especially in connection with May Sartons above mentioned journal, in which she wrote: "I hope to break through into the rough, rocky depths,to the matrix itself. There is violence there and anger never resolved. My need to be alone is balanced against my fear of what will happen when suddenly I enter the huge empty silence if I cannot find support there." 
© Susanne Becker

Montag, 13. Mai 2013

Even after my death

I might not be even
even after my death
which might just be
a metaphor for wanting
not but in general death
- you can not keep it
from approaching you
leave your lalaland
of fantasies my friend -
there might be open bills
between strangers
there might be secrets
between lovers
to hide from
to run from.
Even after my death
I will not stop to write.
Why should I?
How could I
cease to breathe out words
into this hollow universe
where nobody listens.
Which is not the point
at all!
Even after my death
I will try to find this
one true word and
write it down for you
to read – find yourself in it.

© Susanne Becker

Sonntag, 5. Mai 2013

Der Alfred Döblin Preis ....

geht in diesem Jahr an Sasa Stanisic. Ich teile hier einen Beitrag von lovegermanbooks über die entscheidende Lesung der sechs Nominierten, weil meine Freundin Svenja Leiber unter diesen sechs SchriftstellerInnen in der Endrunde war mit ihrem Roman Porträt mit Knochenarm. Ihr Buch Schippino ist eines der besten Bücher, die ich je gelesen habe. Ich hätte ihr den Alfred Döblin Preis wirklich gegönnt! Alle anderen Preise übrigens auch!!