Of Glass & Paper

Sisyphus47's writing blog



Ancient #DailyPost

From the magic crew



He prides himself of a certain fitness, and longevity. At the gym he gets himself checked, measured and weighted. The young trainer congratulates him for his balance in muscular mass and body fat, and shows him the numbers: what could make him happier? Besides she’s most helpful and pretty. She draws up and explains a training plan. He so looks forward to resuming training. Soon he’s on the circuit, demonstrating his willingness to move from theory to practice.

As he works through the plan, she correcting his posture, smiling at his effort, he suddenly feels the weight of all those years: for, after all, he’s an ancient creature, still holding on, thick skinned, and well on its way to oblivion…

Image: Max Ernst (1891 – 1976) Mundmündig 1963 – via thirdorgan

Waiting #DailyPost #Autumn

From the exquisite crew

Processed with VSCO with se3 preset


We look out on the street, the scenery of everyday, ever changing, never fading. Autumn is there, palpable, in the leaves blown across the sidewalks, in the colours of the trees, in the chill in the air. Slowly, implacably, the city changes to its winter clothes.

You and I are waiting, loving, reading, light jazz floating through the rooms. Soon the chill will turn to ice, us too will wear our winter coats.

We love the city, we will never stop waiting.

Image: Glas und Metal, Berlin , September 2016 – via jasminmeyer

Ostwind #Oktober #Berlin


After ten days in Brexland, now a country of much baffled confusion, but, for us, a land of many friends and memories, we took the road back home. Since September, the trees have changed colour, and a cool East wind blows through the wooded vales, across the lakes and through the busy streets. Berliners know how to dress for a chill (the real thing is still to come), no shorts and T-shirts here, but stern pullovers and good parkas.

So, we will gear up for our first Berlin winter, the new opera season, cool jazz, good films, art and joie de vivre. The bikes will be serviced, the car garaged. Soon we’ll back to the gym and the morning jogs in Schiller Park.

Bless the city of Faust.

Photo: Joseph Beuys, das Kapital Raum, 1980 – Staatliche Museum zu Berlin, National Galerie, Sammlung Marx

Disagree #DailyPost #WritersWednesday

Inspired by today’s prompt



“It’s me you’re babbling about, isn’t it?” she said, on a tone of voice that betrayed her mounting anger. I kept silent, no point in denying: the computer screen clearly showing the latest entry on her story was there, in front of us. At this point she was arguing with her ex-husband, and a row was boiling.

“I asked you before: let’s talk first before you start writing about my intimate life, wasn’t that made clear to you?” I could not disagree, we had that conversation a year ago, she’d complained about not being consulted on details of her life she wanted to be true and accurate. Then she even went as far as mentioning “abuse”. An author abusing his characters, well, this character, at any rate.

I wanted a way out, but knew she would not give up easily. “I suggest you read the draft, and I’ll do the corrections you want, within reason. How does that sound to you?” Her reply was as icy as her grey eyes:

“The fool doesn’t even know the power of words. Think again: what you write can never be erased, or edited out. You just hurt people with words, as sure as you would with a knife! So take that for a certainty: I DISAGREE with you messing with me, my life, past and future, unless I have knowledge, beforehand, of what you are plotting.”

She knows her strength: characters have their rights, and for a writer, breaching those is a sure road to bad writing. I went to the kitchen to make her a cup of tea, but when I came back she was gone. The screen showed in large characters:


Unfinished #DailyPost


We have got so far, much is still to be done. We have to go further, down the quiet streets, and the wide avenues, through the small parks, along the canals… There, somewhere, we’ll find ourselves, the meaning of us, the ultimate ecstasy.

Till then, it’s unfinished business, work in progress, the novel unfinished.

Till then, there is only you and me, lovers, haters, fighters, humans.

After us, the déluge…

Image: Maurits Cornelis Escher – Procession in Crypt. 1927 – via drakontomalloi

From the cool guys

Dilemma #DailyPost



So, this is the deal: you stay, and then, here is your place, or you go, and good luck to you. But, you insist, the deal is reversible: if you want me, you have to convince me to stay, or I go. And so, we go on, late into the night, do you want to, or not, and if you want to, how do I convince you to say you do?

For the city attracts us both like a mantis its prey: how to resist beauty beyond belief, how could we say no to paradise? And we won’t. But then you have to make your choice, stay or go.

We know you won’t go, and neither will I. We are playing a game, with blank cards, as white as your beautiful thighs.

Photo: “Der Verliebte”, Paul Klee, 1923, Lithografie mit roter Tonplatte – Museum Berggruen, Berlin

From the crazy crew

In Praise of Older Streets #BerlinDiary September 11


We love the cobbled streets, the antique gas lamps. The older city still resists the onslaught of developers and speculators, the “Gentrifizierung” brigade, and it has allies. Yesterday, cycling our way from the Alex to Kollwitzplatz, and the charms of Prenzlauer Berg, we admired the contrasts, the moving groups, the bon-chic-bon-genre façon Berlin. And we enjoyed the ice-cream…

Closer home, back in proletarian Wedding, the new city remains loyal to its history, its heroes, and through the rumble of traffic, its wonderful parks and small lanes, its lakes. This the rough and tumble life of a city that has now grown back to its population of 1944: yes, 1944.

So, we too, remember 2001 and the victims, on the day, and ever since, of the wars that followed. Bless the cities that are reborn from the ruins.

Photo: Petra Flemming, Porträt Käthe Kolwitz, 1985, Stadt Museum, Berlin (“Stadt der Frauen”)




I have long suspected that the ancient deities – some more powerful than others, but who is it to judge? – take more than a passing interest in the life of this city, when they awake from their deep slumber, in the depth of the marvellously resurrected temples that the reconstructed museums of the island are. I cannot help imagining the ghosts of the ancient pharos and queens, so beautiful still in their golden garbs, surveying the new Rome, listening, with a knowing smile on their lips, to the ever repeated founding myths of the new Republic: the birth, the fall from grace, the “darkest page” in the history of Germany, the destruction, the starvation, the air lift, the new dictatorship, and then, the new dawn.

Freiheit, wir sind das Volk, the fall of the wall, unification. Indeed the achievements are amazing. The city that faced annihilation, misery, death by strangulation, is alive again, and strives. The reconstruction, the revival of the historical monuments, the trees: do the gods look on with appreciation, perhaps with some envy, even, that they are no longer those that the people worship?

The rain interrupted, briefly, the eternal summer. For a while the asparagus disappeared behind a thin veil of clouds and water drops. Subdued and slower, the traffic, the cyclists in waterproof gear… Nefertiti looked on.

How not to be in love with such patronage?

Berlin, Stadt der Frauen #stadtderfrauen


Until 28 August the Stadt Museum exhibition, “Stadt der Frauen“, offers in sound and pictures twenty biographies of talented, heroic, sometimes outrageous, human beings, who lived in Berlin, all women.

As is the case almost everywhere in the world, it is mostly men who have written Berlin’s history. In politics, culture and architecture, they have shaped our perception of the city’s evolution. But this is not the whole story.

Even 150 years ago, Berlin was a place where many things could be done that seemed impossible elsewhere – particularly for women. This exhibition presents the life stories of 20 women, showing how they cast off the corset of societal constraints, what they experienced and how they helped to shape the city’s history.

Don’t miss it is you are in the city. From the socialists of the pioneering period preceding World War 1, to the Trümmerfrauen of 1945, go and have a look at courage and grit.

Photo: Trümmerfrau, inspired by Anni Mittelstädt, chairwoman of the Klub der Berliner Trümmerfrauen (Berlin Women’s Rubble-Clearers Club)

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