Summer day in Berlin

Ewa Maria Slaska

Poetry on flea market Boxhagener Platz

We have about half a hundred flea markets in Berlin and every week it is some more of them. After a party in one of more or less thousand clubs and nearby to breakfast (till 5 pm!) and making photos together in photo booth, maybe even better  than going to the beach cafe in a big noisy city, is shopping tour in a flea market a new must have been done while visiting German Metropole. For us people living here it is a reason for not doing it at all. It is so touristic… But sometimes while not having better idea for spending some hours alone but among many we go there anyway…

I am coming to the flea market Boxhagener Platz. It is a big square surrounded by maybe hundred of booths. In the middle of it there are two playgrounds for children and a big lawn for laying or picnicking.

Flea market is not only looking, buying, selling. It is a lot of life around. Street food of course, coffee in paper cups, meeting friends, finding things lost or left, street art of any kind.

I see him seating on the street with his small yellow typewriter already by coming to the square.

He offers to write a poem for you after giving him some key words. My words are Anton, grandson, cat, Berlin, love, summer. And it is what comes:

Berlin is a purring cat
free to roam,
but whenever she comes by
watching me with ever-changing faces,

I caress it behind the
ears with curious questions
Berlin is a purring cat
capricious, but always there
when you need a nudge

Always new, Berlin
follows me through the years
its fur as colorful as
decades ago;
Berlin is a purring cat,
and my grandson will learn
to take care of her too

Vinski Valos
– the sidewalk scribe
Berlin July 16. – 17



He is from Finland, 24 years, living in Friedrichshain als let say it like that: poetry worker. His fanpage on Facebook is full of surprises from the very begin: bespoke poetry and wordy workshops. OK, OK, bespoke poetry, typewriter poet,  sidewalk scribe (all him). He organises workshops and teach you to learn one unknown or forgotten English word per day called Vinski’s WotD. The WotD 13 is WHIRLIGIG. And when you are sure, he just invented it, he informs you:

whirligig, noun

  1. Anything (often a toy) that spins or whirls around, as a top, pinwheel or windmill
  2. One of the winged seed pods of certain trees, such as the maple, which hover down in a whirly manner. (Also called samaras)
  3. A process or an event characterized by restlessness and constant change…And so on and so on…

He also has his own Homepage, with blog, prose and poems.

The first example of his writing, without looking for anything special:

“Kalervo’s fingers traced unswervingly the contours of the body, stroking the skin, not straying before the wounds.”

Scroll down or die

You see, what I mean.

I buy some yummy cookies by children flea market. It is a very nice summer Berlin custom, the children selling their old toys and books at the beginning of vacation. The things are chip and you know, even if they are already growed off, they had times of being loved. You simply see it. The cookies were backed by a Mom.

Strolling soon I find another piece of poetry, in a both of old photos. The woman on the pic looks pleased, she smiles a bit and her gaze comes directly to us. But somebody gave her picture a poem cutted off from a daily. Maybe she herself, who knows…


I go alone
through the streets
in the sea of houses
without hearts
Alone and lost
I hunt down
I seemed happy
I seemed pleased
on a play of my time.
A circle which closed
only vacuum ist bigger.
A tear which is here
runs into infinity.
I feel like being a tree
around which everything
It is like a nightmare
which promises itself
something good.
So I am living
just living further
like a beaten child.
I ask who am I?
With no future
and with no sense,
I keep to my dreams
and look for something
what I never find
never find…


Of course at home I try to find an author of that poem in internet, but no, no way… I find the verses, o yeah, once or twice, somebody knew them and used them to express their own feelings, but no, he or she didn’t notice who had wrote them…

I know, there is the name just beneath a poem, directly under the frame. Making photos I did not see it, but now I know, it is there. Tomorrow is sunday again, I go to the flea market to see, if I still find the photo…

Have a nice weekend if you are from happy new world of UE :-), have a lot of power if you are in Poland or Turkey, we send it to you…

One thought on “Summer day in Berlin

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