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Gardar Baldvinsson



Dying for an ice-cream with licquorice and mango. My father wanted a fag in the end. Held it unable to smoke for his coughing. As if it was his last. Suspicious looks from beneath the wall. Strange how death comes upon you like sleep. No escape. Half-closed eyes. Staring pupils in a colourless desiccation.

He suddenly rose to embrace her. I love you. Afterwards I remember that he never reached her. The voice almost undistinguishable. Eyes filled with something I didn’t recognize. Later I seem to know it‘s compassion but don’t really know. Seem to remember a presentiment that the family was lost to him long before life was. If he had it. If he could get into contact.

I saw the bus was getting off. No ice-cream car close by. These few ecstatic words just before death moved me for a while. Moved an inch he fell into a coma lasting until he breathed no more and seemed free from all pain.




the drunken indian lies quite still and hasn’t moved an inch for half an hour. I stand talking to my only friend in the city contemplating whether the other is a dead body, gathered to his fathers and mothers discussing the topics of the day which are not the same as in their lives or in my country from which I came a living child of the city, now watching the specter of the indian, looking for a way to feel real sympathy for him, to feel an urge to attend to him, to walk over to him, to check for signs of life in this dark bluedirtyish abject of the city, dead-still now for an hour, as I give my friend my last regard


Spring Equinox


Evening dragging on as we get

closer to the spring equinox. It sometimes

so happens in my front-yard

that a stubborn singing embraced in

a heavy and mighty sound of wings

takes flight, as if amplified into a film

by il maestro in a strong crescendo

of a hiss, as if the suspended wings

were straight above me gliding my

eyes out the window onto splinters

of an indigo-ivy sky in between

barren branches. In the vaults of heaven

a cascade of clinging sounds

reminiscent of the hand

of my absent father

one day a long time ago.


Was there a clicking tongue?


Feels that way at times

drawing closer to the spring







academic upheavals

filled him with boyish pluckiness

as the cops, oblivious of the day,

arrested and killed

when your namesake the black Rosa Parks

refused to give her seat to the white man

on the bus in Montgomery Alabama


and his attempt, a stillborn

stealing of fire, the flashing light

on the black and white silver screen

yellow like an ancient word of love

filled with the world’s countenance

and faint whispers

thick as thieves

past the screen this smothered night


not another soul in his inner ear

please take your friend by the hand

deliver him from evil

lead him in the paths of righteousness

for if you let him go

calamaties await at every turn


an infinitely precise straight

line of endless soup-cans

Roska, confounding values wrestling

inside his writhing white skin

inside the skin of a taut body

with no aim one dark hour

of a plucky boy


a constrained consciousness, Roska, ruptured

a verbosity of visions on a blood-orange screen

tranquilizing his pressing breath,

Roska, a roaring and a moaning in his veins,

a framed still-life dredged

from the matrix of the pacified ocean,

thick as thieves


drawing sketches of frescoes on the cerebral walls

with a silvery white light bulb,

he cuts the filament in his fumbling desire

in an awakening body

dazzling black pearls at every turn


Roska Roska Roska Parks

a membrane unfolding destiny’s presence


in the fences of time


Deep inside the thickets of the forest no pools of light can reach the undergrowth this warm Spring day. A soft and sapless breeze lingering in the senses of my son and me when our eyes catch the large maple leaf lightly soaring onto our retinas perfectly able to cover up his whole body. In our hands it becomes an egg of life and we expect a mobile mattress in the shady beams of darkness. Beams of sunshine are playing further up but get stuck in the thicket embracing the crowns with light. A wall of sound covering up the wont of stories with silence as stories rise.


Did I catch the Biafratimes with huge stomachs of kids breaking into the crannies of unappetising fish in hardened tallow. A desiccated self on the plate with threats. Someone else painted Dorian Gray. Took over his self-image. Hardened in a different oil. Woman is the nigger of the world which the man sold on his way to the meat-store begging for bones for his five day soup.


He asks how an american story so promising with strong and weak characters and provocative events always becomes so fucking typical dressed up in the robe of a king once prince who marries the princess who had changed him from a swan and the story even reveals how he first was changed into a swan and the dark-edged spears in the sunny web like an inverted armour and the sunbeams corner us amongst the undergrowth.


A reeking story of a girl in a wide creek by the magical shore sitting every morning cutting out of felt characters and events from a holy book where god strikes men with forty days of rain or dries up the ocean like any homely godhead. One morning she is tired or something and almost finishing a picture of a fire-struck bush which opens the eyes of men for the majesty and power of god as the young girl stumbles over her sweet Selma which she keeps by her cheek in her sleep and the childish scissors open up in her protecting hand as she falls. Her eyes focussed on the two tips terminating her sight.


The walls are dripping with blood contaminating the curtains. And humanity makes the world slippery and the calmness of the poetess covers up a tragedy only to be fixed by the only healer as destiny will not cut her like a blade of grass. She had left the deserted shore with the joy of friends for the land of unexpected forests and employments. The only only only woman in this vast land passing her time by writing poetry in which quietude and anguish battle. Poverty and cold and loneliness make her a tight frock while Pegasus is earthbound. Like a pauper when the powers appear and force the poet to an asylum. Apprehend her manuscripts and such useless junk for the fire. No children there to complicate things. Her road covered with rime. No friendly eye smiling to her in this log-cabin broken down for a train-station broken down for a dormitory broken down for a rough city-wasteland as death comes demanding yet another straw. The cut blade endowed with more, perhaps a new beginning although she has no idea where it could lead her.


Tufts of wool in the fences of time and the branches of trees congest the lines of light. The sparkling firmament as hieroglyphs of history. Working for others, washing clothes, cleaning houses. A poet cut from her language. Nobody waiting at home except the marvellous language shining in poems and halos of stories. Her friends and their descendants receiving her warmest words. And the paper receives her poems eaten by the fire. Flowers in the window sighing during poor days. Nobody sings in here except for her humming every once in a while something the flowers don’t understand, yet sensing her sorrow and tranquility. The names of flowers sound unfamiliar. A tongue with which she has touched her friend’s breast and blessed him. A centennial peace over nipples no child has ever sucked. A declaration of love falls on tree-bound earth. Hands fondling foreign leaves. The ferns that meet the eye written on by vital sunbeams rising high against a bisexual world with its one-sexed life.


What is it that you can only get to the center of asks my son at the fringe of the forest beside a memorial for the girl which the mountain lion stole. A stonesthrow away there’s another for a little boy fooled into a white van by men who cut the life-line of his fictional world. And the two of us step into the omnipresent newly freed sunshine that forest stories cannot curb although we soon come onto a maple-tree in an iron cage fenced off from parking spaces now full.



a shining white light


with his large-brimmed hat and the black ancient tie-bow my grandpa looks at me from a frame on the wall as if from the distance of his workers tavern and I remember how he in Capetown, where the bank is now, stood in the door as the end was closing up on him, resting on his cane in the light door on which the dream-woman knocked later startling my grandma and waving his other hand to pass the time to my brother as he glides inside to his bed in his white hospital jacket teaching me some prayers with a sodapop and stories on his lips about granny the great woman


a long while after he tapped the floor rocking to and fro like a keening Irish lady I am in my middle age burying his daughter, invaded by a farfetched embracing stream of memories, calm encouragement, visits, Saturday walks to church, an ice-cream so easy, the memory almost a lost beloved child, an impregnated sound-poem as a shining white light from under the stones rolling by themselves



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