Zeitgeistlyrik: Musings in the Garden (Satis Shroff)
The reassuring ray of the sun
Break through the birch trees.
You stop chewing your bread
Listen to the birds
Twittering and chirping,
Singing hymns to the sunrise,
On your spacious terrace.
After the long, icy winter
You enjoy the warmth
Of the glorious lamp of Heaven.
Out in the East,
Below the blue hills,
You discern the sound of cars
Whizzing by like a swarm of hornets.
In the early morning
By the blue titmice,
Kohlmeise and field sparrows,
Busily chirping and picking
At the sun-flower seeds,
You’ve strewn in the garden
And bird house,
Which dangles from a metal arch,
Where the steps begin.
A flurrying of wings,
Causes the two hares to scurry,
Take refuge on the cobbled terrace,
A warning that the fat cat from the neighbourhood
Is on the prowl in the undergrowth,
Resembling a tropical tiger.
As you gaze up on the slope,
You see the sleek, wicked Fingerhut (digitalis)
Reaching out for the sun in light-blue glory.
The oval table is decorated
With a flowery cloth.
A bunch of flowers in a vase:
Samenhut, citrus geraniums, blue lavender,
The aroma of the coffee
Reaches your nostrils,
Mixed with the aromatic smell
Of the Moroccan pepermint,
Rucola leaves on the side of the steps,
Etheric lavender linger in the air.
On the table are a couple of baguettes,
Self-made mirabelle marmelade,
Würst from Oberried,
Evoking remembrance of things past:
Lives devoted to three-leaves-and-a-bud,
Friendly, simple-minded Gorkhalis
With legendary hospitality.
You’re fascinated how the amaryllis flowers grow,
Underneath the snow in long, wintry months,
If left alone.
Your heart leaps with joy,
When a porch of white Schneeglöckchen greet you,
When the winter is over.
Children believe the small white bells ring
The advent of Spring.
O how wonderful to have a garden,
To discover now flowers,
God’s creatures flourishing all around you,
Nourishing your fantasy,
Reminding you of a misty dream.
The violets and lily cups
That smile today
Only to die tomorrow.
A nightingale on the sycamore,
Lichens and moss on the floor,
Swallows swooping out of the azure world,
Wind oozing from the fir trees
Of the Schwarzwald,
Dark and tall.
O to devote your soul and senses,
The joys it brings,
Laughter, love, desire,
Dance, songs, revelry,
Though its pleasures are uncertain,
Propose a toast
To what’s left of Nature,
In taverns, inns and with friends,
With Baccus we tickle our senses,
With hoarse vocal chords,
Red wine et golden beer.
The Höllentäler and Kappeler
That have been howling for hours,
Have gone to sleep.
Kappel with its lush green meadows,
Along the Eschenweg,
Kirchzarten with its tucked-away
Valleys and spurs,
Beckoning and enticing you
To Schwarzwald farms,
Hidden below the blue mountains,
With promises of bread, cheese,
Blood and liver sausages
Near old water-mills.
Schneeglöckchen: snow bells
Höllentäler: wind from the Vale of Hell on the way to Titisee
Kappeler: wind from Kappel
Würst: German word for sausage
Schwarzwälderspeck: bacon from the Black Forest
Zitronen geranien: citrus geraniums
Katzenminze: cat’s eye
* * *
The Schwarzwald Shepard (Satis Shroff)
It is late Autumn
The old German shepard sits and thinks
In the Schwarzwald,
While his three hundred sheep
Graze and bleat,
On the lush meadows of the Eschenweg.
An outsized overcoat and fell hat,
Against the biting wind.
A man fighting against the times.
The fridge is his doom,
In supermarts and discount shops.
Mutton for the gluttons from cities,
Packed and stored for a long time,
That makes him worry.
A haggard expression on his unshaven face,
Hair crawling like the snakes on Medusa’s head,
Pondering and brooding about life,
As the sky growls,
And Heaven cries.
He weeps and asks in soliliquay:
– ‘Who am I?
– What am I doing here?
– What has become of me?’
Amid the raindrops,
Drumming on his cape,
Interspersed with the bleating
Of a sheep.
* * *
Come To My Garden (Satis Shroff)
Come with me to my garden
On the upper terrace of a house
In the Schwarzwald.
Along the stony wall,
Arranged like a terrace,
You are greeted by the fragrance
Of a Brother Cadfael rose,
One of those David Austin roses.
Strong violet coloured Knäuelglocken flowers.
Next to them hidcote blue lavender,
Aromatic ‘afrodite’ peterselie.
The plant of eternal life: Jiaogulau,
Which you can use as a medicinal tea.
There you espy Petroselinium reispum,
Known as Petersilie mooskrause in German,
Used for salad, soup, sauces,
Meat and vegetable dishes.
Along broad steps you’ll find blue katzenminze,
Called Bodendecker in German,
For it covers the entire place where it planted.
Akelei with white, blue and red petals
Are put under Schattenstauden,
Because they give shade.
The Mädchenauge, reminds you of the eyes of a maid,
Scarlet in the middle and yellow outwards on its petals.
Nearby are Duftgeranien alias ‘fensham,’
Scent flowers with a citrus fragrance.
The blue Ysop is a strong spice
For meat dishes, salads and stews.
On the terrace you discover Syringa vulgaris,
With its light violet flowers.
We call it flieder in Germany.
A Caucasian forget-me-not winks at you.
There are exquisite passion flowers,
Introduced in Europe by a priest,
Has leaves with three lances,
The white flower chalice a metaphor for innocence,
The coloured striae depict the thorny crown.
You find those ubiquitous scarlet geraniums,
That you see in the balconies of traditional wooden houses
In the Black Forest, Switzerland and Austria.
You feel like wearing a dirndle and let out a yodel
In the fresh Kappeler surrounding.
If a garden is unkept,
Hares and rabbits relish dandelions everywhere.
O what do we have here:
With beautiful pink flowers.
If that doesn’t get you I’m sure
The fantastic aroma of the Chinese Rhumesblume will.
It is used in Thailand and Malaysia to cure rheuma,
And has a sweet fragrance.
On the hillside you have different wild growing berries:
Johannesbeer, Heidelbeer, Brombeer
Promise you excellent sweet wines.