ECHOLOCATION: AERIAL SCRIPT by Helwig Brunner, translated by Monika Zobel

/ / Issue 3, Poetry, Translation

Echolot. Luftlinienschrift

Die Fledermäuse, an ihre Laute gedacht,
unhörbar, das Horchen also hinein in eine
Stille, die keine ist; sie ziehn den Blick
in den Dämmerhimmel, das Zickzack ihres
Flatterfluges, samtpelzige Beinahvögel,
die mit den Ohren schaun: Bilder hören.
Wenig später sind sie entzogen, entflogen
hinter die schwarze Jalousie der Nacht,
gesättigt an den Blindstellen des Echos
und ich denke sehr banal, wie wenig ich
auslote mit Worten.


Helwig Brunner‘s work has been published in numerous literary magazines and anthologies in Europe and elsewhere, including New European Poets (Graywolf Press, 2008). Brunner has published eight books of poetry, most recently Vorläufige Tage (Leykam Verlag, 2011) and Die Sicht der Dinge: Rätselgedichte (edition keiper, 2012), as well as some novels, short stories, and essays. He has been the recipient of several literary prizes in Austria and Germany.



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Echolocation: Aerial Script

The bats, reflecting on their sounds,
inaudible, thus eavesdropping on a
silence, which is none; they drag the gaze
through the twilight sky, the zigzag of their
flutter flight, satin-fur nearly birds
that see with their ears: listen to images.
A little later they diminish, vanish
behind the black blinds of night,
satiated by the blind spots of the echo
and I think how little I sound out
with trite words.


Monika Zobel‘s poems and translations have been published in Redivider, The Cincinnati Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Cream City Review, Mid-American Review, The Adirondack Review, Guernica Magazine, West Branch, Best New Poets 2010, and elsewhere. A senior editor at The California Journal of Poetics and recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship, she currently lives in Vienna, Austria.