In November the winds blow in from the Baltic
marching abreast down the length of the Ku' damm,
tossing up handbills and candy-bar wrappers,
past the Gedächtniskirche,
through the Zoo.
Political exiles, they headed south
to sip cognac together in claw-footed bathtubs
and kiss on the rocks overlooking the harbor.
When he thinks of her now, he recalls with regret
the texture and sheen of her skin.
Er starb in dem Mieswetter,
sighed the widow.
For the winds are implacable. Late at night
she hears them batter the massive front door
like a black-gloved fist: Machen Sie
In the U-Bahn, graffiti: Wir wollen
and then in red letters, Nazis 'raus!
The passengers rock
through the bruised, felonious sleep of a tunnel.
Sad, sadder, saddest,
the children chant,
staring sleepily out of the classroom window
at the golden sword of the Siegessäule,
and the streets named after despotic rulers
as darkness plunders the visible world
and trains plunge into the sea.