Frayed Opus for Strings & Wind Instruments

Frayed Opus for Strings & Wind Instruments



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Frayed Opus for Strings & Wind Instruments by Ulrikka S. Gernes

The English translation of new work from a celebrated Danish poet.

Frayed Opus for Strings & Wind Instruments is a collection of poems that zooms in and out of places and states of mind, from a lit bicycle shed in the back yard to a root canal in November, from a typhoon in Hong Kong to instincts astray in various Copenhagen neigbourhoods. Elegantly translated by Canadian collaborators Per Brask and Patrick Friesen, these dreamlike poems attempt, with honesty and humour, to fathom what it is to inhabit a specifically unspecific point in life--not to mention in the Universe.

...In my pocket I have the photo of the house, I have to stop continually, put the suitcases down, take the photo from my pocket and compare the house in the photo with the houses we pass. In this way seventeen years go by.
--from Frayed Opus for Strings & Wind Instruments

Praise for the work of Ulrikka S. Gernes: "...airy and abstract, like pinching smoke... risky and intriguing." --The Antigonish Review

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781771313766
Publisher: Brick Books
Publication date: 08/15/2015
Pages: 64
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Ulrikka S. Gernes is the author of eleven collections of poetry and two books for children, as well as many short stories, songs, and various contributions to literary anthologies, art catalogues, magazines and newspapers. Her work has been highly acclaimed in Denmark since the publication of her first collection Natsvaermer (Moth) in 1984 when she was 18. In 2001 A Sudden Sky: Selected Poems, translated into English by Per Brask and Patrick Friesen, was published by Brick Books.

Table of Contents

Foreword vii

A frayed opus for strings 1

Night-black silver, January's luminous 2

The image of the river fills most of the picture 3

February's heart thumps to take the chill 4

K was supposed to come with the key, I was 5

Sparks sleep in flint and I, amorphous, am the answer 6

Barely five minutes later we've moved into 7

A microscopic shift in the air molecules 8

Not a single leaf exists on a single 9

Rushing forward below undulating arches 10

I retrieve the letters from the box 11

In the beam from the taxi's headlights 12

I bring a large bunch with me back home 13

Who would have thought that chests 14

The call of the knife-grinder in the alley at dawn, the knives 15

The decisive moment, the decisive 16

The chestnut trees are blooming along 18

I have to find F. I don't know why and I don't know 19

I write this on the back of a turquoise-blue 20

On the table in the room in the dark 21

Struggling through sleet in order to 21

Odd how you are in my thoughts 23

Via Veneto. I write to you on the hotel stationery 24

Prague 1991-1 had seen her standing outside the cafe 25

You only love me when I smoke 27

The road is long and who knows what awaits? 28

In the thicket of possibilities 1 choose the continental 31

All night long I participate in a quiz show, wake up 32

This evening is my evening, she said, he says, this evening 33

An intergalactic collision of lights, sounds 34

Remember, longing doesn't diminish over the years 35

Dogger Bank, all that junk, words 36

On H. C. Andersen Boulevard during rush hour 37

Along night's slippery slope, shiny steel 38

Exactly what I was meant to pick up 39

The headlines shout about abused children and sacked 40

Skinny people are more naked, you said 41

You left me a three-armed candelabrum 42

It's as though you were just here 43

The snake rattles among the dry leaves 44

No more now. Even fear has fear. Even of itself 45

I drag the depths of a life for a single 46

I clip fear of death onto the upper 47

That I have an atonal abrupt relationship 48

You need a railway station, a cello, you need 49

Abruptly awakened by a colour's noise, dense, furious 50

An acute root canal closer to the edge 51

Afterword 53

Acknowledgements 57

Biographical Notes 59

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