augury doggerel

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


On a corner where six lanes of loud cross-town traffic and two tram lines meet the traffic jam between the train station and the airport, where cranes and excavators put up the city's largest shopping mall, one corner is dark with old chestnuts. Concrete slabs over part of the ground form a small parking lot, but the lot lies empty. Nothing profitable is done, and so I wonder what sort of land dispute could prevent this plot from becoming a gas station, a car wash, a drive-through chicken restaurant. But here it is on old maps, 1941, 1914, 1908, 1899, 1898, 1807, Alte Kathol. Friedhof or Kath Fdhf or just a few inked crosses. Not one stone remains, but the chestnuts mark the boundaries of the lot and form a double row up the center, where folk must have walked slowly and then stood.

Saturday, September 02, 2006


The business pages all say one in ten where I work will be eliminated. Two legions of us. We will know who Tuesday night, Wednesday morning.

Friday, September 01, 2006


On the way home, tall "Zeppelin" cranes swing over a worksite and a row of "Junkers" water heaters fill the window of a plumbing supply shop. In the garden at home, I dig up broken glass, broken brick, and hear people speak German in the street. I feel exactly like September 1st.