John Koethe Poems
Comments about John Koethe
I love the insulation of strange cities:
Living in your head, the routines of home
Becoming more and more remote,
Alone and floating through the streets
As through the sky, anonymous and languageless
Here at the epicenter of three wars. Yesterday
I took the S-Bahn into town again
To see the Kiefer in the Neue Nationalgalerie,
A burned out field with smoke still rising from the furrows
In a landscape scarred with traces of humanity
At its most brutal, and yet for all that, traces of humanity.
What makes this world so frightening? In the end
What terrifies me...
Below the Coast
A clumsy hillock
Unmolded like a cake on the meadow
In the Laguna Mountains. Tough yellow-green grass growing up to a tree
As thick as a tooth. In winter, on the road from San Diego,
Thousands of cars crawl up to the snow
And their passengers get out to investigate it
And then drive, discoursing, back home. And that's California,
Solemnly discharging its responsibilities.