“Berlin: 20 Years Since the Wall Collapsed”
On 9 November 1989, the Berlin Wall collapses and thousands of Berliners express their joy. 20 years later, Michael Haeflinger, a collage artist and poet from Ohio who lives in Berlin, asks questions. East side/west side…Anarchists…Allied forces…Kubat Dreieck…What happened to Prenzlauer Berg?…Media Spree?…Do you still dream of Helmut Kohl?…Do you remember when Berlin was cool?…Do you remember when Berlin was not cool?…Poor but Sexy…What does it mean to live in, love, and leave a city like Berlin? Here are some answers. – Michael Haeflinger, Berlin
Audrey Mei is an American cellist and writer in Berlin, and at present she also enjoys her profession in alternative health care. She completed her studies in biological psychology and classical cello in Boston before receiving a Fulbright Scholarship to continue her musical training in the solo class at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland (1996-1997). Her poems and short stories have appeared both in print and online. The series of poems Five Short Pieces for a Talking City is her first publication with Gangway.
Edward Mackinnon studied Modern Languages at St John’s College, Cambridge and at Warwick University. He lives in Eindhoven, Netherlands, where he works as a translator. He has had two poetry collections published by Shoestring Press: Wising Up, Dressing Down (2002) and Killing Time in Arcadia (2006). This poem is titled Taking Sides in Germany.
Paul Murphy was born in Belfast in 1965. He studied at the University of Warwick, gaining a BA in Film and Literature. From there he went to Queen’s University Belfast to study for an MA on TS Eliot and the French philosopher Jacques Lacan. He has just finished a stint as writer-in-residence at the Albert-Ludwig Universität, Freiburg im Breisgau, Baden-Würtemburg, Germany. His poetry, literary criticism, book reviews and travel writings have been published all over the world in many small journals. He has published four pamphlets, one previous book of poetry (In the Luxembourg Gardens, University of Salzburg Press), a book of criticism on the American poet TS Eliot (TS Eliot’s Post-Modernist Complaint, Postpressed, Australia). He presently divides his time between Belfast and London. Two Poems.
Sally Flint is an award winning poet and writer of short fiction. Her writing is published in a variety of journals and she is also co-editor of a short story journal based at the University of Exeter, England. She is working on a PhD investigating links between contemporary poetry and painting and is an advisor/facilitator for ‘Stories Connect’. She reflects Berlin in Five Poems.
Mary Beth Warner spent two years in the late ‘90’s living in Berlin-Weissensee, where she was a Fulbright fellow and freelance journalist. At the time, she spent many afternoons at Hohenschönhausen and Normannenstraße, drinking endless cups of coffee and learning about the Stasi. In March, she returned to Berlin for the first time in a decade, and found Normannenstraße much the same as when she left it. She lives in the Chicago area with her husband, two children, and two water frogs. Here is a piece of prose, entitled Enlightened.
Karen Nowviskie of the United States, is a lover of language and literature who has spent most of her life teaching others to read and write. She currently directs the early childhood education program for her school district in West Virginia. Karen loves to travel and feels a special affinity for Germany, the home of some of her relatives. Her poem is On Bebelplatz.
Louis Gallo was born and raised in New Orleans and teaches at Radford University in Virginia. His work has appeared or will soon appear in Glimmer Train, American Literary Review, Berkeley Fiction Review, storySouth, Soujourn, Rattle, The Ledge, The Southern Quarterly, Texas Review, Missouri Review, New Orleans Review and many others. His piece is simply called Wall.
Alistair Noon was born in 1970 and has been based in Berlin since the early nineties. His work includes At the Emptying of Dustbins (Oystercatcher Press), In People’s Park (Penumbra, forthcoming), /The Last Drop: Versions of August Stramm/ (Intercapillary Space, online) and Sixteen Poems: Monika Rinck (Barque Press, forthcoming). He is currently translating Osip Mandelstam, and presents here Towards the Conference.
Andre Jahn, born 1973 in Niedersachsen, lives in Berlin. Publications of short pieces of prose and poems in magazines and anthologies. Not words but Andre’s Slide Show Berlin is closing Lit-Mag #39 with images from the German capital city, 20 years since the wall collapsed.