The Clear Tone / Mirror of Hearts / House of Language.. / Stone Dreamed

Liv Lundberg:




THE CLEAR TONE  (Den klare tonen)


The clear tone

the insurgents sent out

before they attacked the despot

before they were slaughtered

in the ensuing massacre


The bright

hopeful tone.



(trans.: P.T.Hopper)


ALONE NOONE  (Ensom Ingen)


My fingers claw you out from the paper.


I created a fairytale, an enchanted castle.

I built you under the sun

on the world´s very first morning –

you stood there:


I sent runners out with the four winds

to fetch fire, for you were so cold,

so cold were you beneath my kisses.


But here is:


I cross my arms above my head

and carry my defeat carefully to the sea.





(Avstanden jeg kan se deg gjennom)


Sleeplessness without you.

Freedom without you.

Freedom to arrive and depart,

to love and to leave and to come and make love.


I can feel it when you are close,

but I see you through a distance.


Not to take the consequences of this

is a waste

of precious love and time.


Waste is the opposite of grace.

If you have grace you have mercy.






HEART OF THE WORLD  (Innerst i verden)



seeps into the earth

like blood,


pierces through space

like arrows.



flows into all crevices

like water,

fills all cavities

like air,


burns and cleanses

or chars and destroys

like fire.


Creates new, green sprouts

each spring

like the earth.




SNOWNIGHT  (Snønatt)


I float through the snow.

The snow came at last

rushing here

in the dark. A white message.

Bridal veil.


There are crowds of people out here.

They fall in the snow.

Eyes bleeding with ice.

The light through the snow,

shining white.


Horses and children laugh.

The dogs bark.

The people jump in the cold.

Steam from fresh horse-dung

rises upwards.


It’s a really a world of snow,

at last and and I´m falling

through the white darkness.


Traces of pasts

and futures are wiped out.

Each step is separate

like letters on white paper.

Winter – a little lamb,

shakes its fleece – where did you come from,

when you came out to us?

(trans. Anne Born)
FINALLY THEY COME   (Endelig kommer de)


Out of the dark

people swarm

dressed in peculiar outfits.

They carry torches, banners,

several musical instruments,

huge stuffed dolls

and different species of animals.

They sing, beckon and dance.

The noise rises towards the balcony.


I lean against the railing, tense

in my new set of clothes.

Then I run downstairs and out,

disappear in the crowd of people.







YOU 1 (Du)


My hands wander along

your contours:


The curve of your cheeks, the shoulder angle

the body´s many heights and hollows


To get a hold of your extension

to mark the boundaries of your significance


Decide where you end

and something else begins


You can’t flow out unbounded

over your surroundings

Not every possible content is yours


Your extremities connect with others’

and become meeting points



YOU 2  (Deg)


When I return home I find

you in the world and the world in you


When I sink into your eyes

When I crawl around in your body


are we a house of meeting points

A balancing act over open space


Our bodies unfold their petals

Flying soft waves trough your inner space


I am your rain your darkness, you

my blond lover, you said to me:


The only thing I want from you: You

All that I want from you: You






DRUDGERY, MISERY  (Slit, ulykke…..til mine mødre)

(to my mothers)


Green herb-women aslant

across brown-striped forest paths

into the woods

– hasty as shadows of cats


Women crossing

the lifelines of males

Do they bring misery?


Male bulking fences

by the start of female developments

Yet merely rosy white girls

They end up in misery


Newborn who should be holy

talismen from the future


Herb-women in the woods

flapping shadows

with countless pockets


Babies in the river, in the marsh

Black aprons of sorrow

Lines over faces and stomach skin

Lines leading to the precipice in the eyes


Backs bent over drudgery, over joy

over the living children

The endless necessity of food

and the icy cold water for washing

Ice lumps on the firewood sticks

Deep snow surrounding the knees

The womb as the naos of pain


Points of comfort:

Fire under the brewing pan

Sunlight on the porridge grain

The animal mumbling repose

Milk of mothers and of animals


I don’t see the husband

I don’t know

if he was a heavy comfort

or a cool curse

The hard rock in the middle

or an outline –

visible but empty.




RUSHING BROOK, TWINS  (Bekkesus, tvillinger)


Childhood in a green valley

Brooks were rushing underneath the mountain


We were many children

We had many places


Flat fields in front of a stony stairway

Violet flowers by the sunburnt wall


In my childhood there was sun


When the old died

we were seated around the open coffins’

sharp wax-yellow features


When the new-born died

we got to see the pictures of small coffins

Twin graves in the churchyard


(Louis Muinzer)





I see clenched fists in the eyes

darkskinned movements

across the white forehead


The acute span of existence:

resistance against, acceptance of

the sole significant insight:


The road is the goal – the bridge

leads across to the country

that does not yet exist


(trans. LL)





HER  (Henne)


It shines from her

In the morning her eyes are naked

Later they slip into a troll


I remember she’s been her before

Pressed up against the wall she was laughing

Like a gentle serious angel


She lives in images

She walks on roads in the air

She never waits patiently


I can’t keep hold of her

She lights red lanterns on the ice

And vanishes over the next hill


(trans. Anne Born)
MAY-BE  (Kan-skje)


She might be more concerned with my words

than with beauty´s pretty shoes


She might reject the prince and the dress

and get up shiny language outfits


I hear fragile tinkling word-sounds.

Friends are coming with dandelion wine


Grandmother will open the living-room doors

put wine-glasses on the lace cloth


The sun will blink and open the windows

and fill the air with buckets of daisies


The friends lift smiles in their glasses

Children share shiny pictures and apple cider


Grandmother might well bake a pastry-cake

Grandfather might fetch wood for the stove

and smoked salmon, Uncle Thomas is likely to

bring his accordion and Ole Johan snatches

the fiddle from the wall, maybe she’ll read some poems


to the music and the cat

which purrs against our feet.


(trans. Anne Born / LL)



(Spr}kets hus har åpninger 1982)


THE PATTERN WHICH CONNECTS  (Mønstret som binder sammen)


In the beginning:

A pattern of organic energy


where sub-atomic particles

dance without known cause


dance with many steps

and huge results


all that we see and are and do

are results – in this respect


Either that’s where it will also end:

with the sub-atomic


when a sufficient number of

atoms are detonated


Or it will continue:

In the pattern which connects


all the niveaus in a single comprehension

of the one imminent god of nature


which is all


LOVELY  (Vakkert)


sitting, scratching

holes in the sheat of paper


how ruthlessly


not really able to do

anything else


lovely he speaks


could come across

a beautiful day

under the paper

in the aching language

THE LINGUAL HOUSE  (Språkets hus)


The lingual house

has openings


The light and the wind

cast in streaks of star-littered universe,

snow crystals and chlorophyll


In the house live human beings

naturally I live here too


The house has a bloody furniture

a frenzy of violence and klillings


Yet the language speaks

as if all is normal


We are lingual animals

more dangerous than all

crossing every border


In the house live everybody I love

they have nowhere else to live


Even the ones sparkling with poetry

pulsating with redhot longings

and spinning rainbows of tender care


Even the children´s bodies

contain that house

there are no escape


While we watch each other dying

we are forced to catch the wind


stars and chlorophyll



IT’S NOT DANGEROUS  (Det er ikke farlig)


It´s all about vertigo


when you grabble dizzingly

after a handshake


when your feet have not understood

their place on earth, when


the law of gravity has been upset

and the very centre is getting uncentered


When the circling motions whirr

from centrifugal fears


then you easily tip over the presipice

never having practised to fall


You´ll collide with the earth

in close contact


get dark blotches, swellings and wounds

a map over non-verbal terrain


It’s not dangerous

it´s only hurting

AIKIDO   (Aikido)


Kanetsuka sensei demonstrates


ai – ki – do


The body’s deep recognition

its inner strenght accompany the breathing

on its way to the movement’s complete




A fanning ray of circular movements

out from the point of gravity’s unyielding




The power of the attacker is turned against

the attacker to make him realize:

His attack was an act of evil



After a demonstration of the japanese

art of defence, aikido, in Troms|, march 1982


Zen monks bake their black bread with no tears

shaping them selfevidently in their centre

still round forms turn to gold in the oven

crisp crusts around soft smelling heat


Zen monks eat the bread with no tears – and tea









IMAGES IN BREATH AND EARTH  (Bilder i pust og jord)


Villages with church steeples


The dark trees shivering in the wind


Crests and hollows of naked bodies


Cries of anxiety and hands folded


Fluttering wings and animal tracks


In the depths of the well in space


Between the past and the future


A silent basis of language


Riddles you´ll never forget


Answers to questions nobody asked


Images laugh at our glances


Our intentions and calculations


Our causal chains and self-control


Images starved by language


Play at the bottom of weeping


Hunting here in this encounter


Beneath a pale, grey sky


Across vast snowy plains


Over soft moss and birch trees


Images are carved out on mountain walls


From longing and necessity


To navigate the dreaming


To where people work together


Give birth to each other close to the ground


Images travel in breath and earth


Through space and time



THE EARTH IS SPINNING DIZZILY  (Jorda er virvlende ør)


My life nailed to yours

Thus we got common wound

and common earth


the earth is black will

and suction


I approached you

on a combination of

lack and lust


You came out from your distance

and grabbed me


the earth is spinning dizzily

in space


In this light you are

a penetrating pattern

emptying in me


earth is growing children

dreams, wars


and limits to all



OPEN, INTENT  (åpen, ufravendt)



Outstreched mornings, brimfull

of affections, sensations


Your skin on the tips of my fingers

expand me into a rain of lust


Shameless and grateful

I suck in your warm time


Your body is earth and fruit

I bury my roots in you


Salty summer flows from you

open, intent, I receive



TO FIND A COMMON ENTRANCE  (For å finne en felles inngang)


Love as blindman’s buff

as certain as jammed lock


and as acute

Cold seeps into all cracks


I forget you several times a day

you gather me more seldom


into your hands

The house freezes to


a bittle taste in the communication

and cold aversion in the tenderness


The room encloses in a tired movement

but nothing settles down


and nothing arises

Steps are going away in the snow


nights frosted by grief

I search for an exit


to find a common entrance:

You are human I am human


To be opposite is something else

than being averted, my beloved


“why don’t you try me tonight?”



NO MORE DELAY   (Ingen utsettelse lenger)


There is no more

delay, it’s now and forever


Sadly I´m streched with the wind

leaning on the currents

mixing up bondaries


If I really was bowing down

if I really was getting up


If I swayed and danced

humbly on the ground


Who would kick me

who would spit on me?


The question is mine alone

now and forever


With my head under my arm

I forswore three times


There is something about the world

I cannot bear, one single


vast injustice I cannot endure

Where can I possibly then


invest my gratitude?

I no longer wait for an answer


I have drunk and emptied a dream

what is left achs tenderly


I’m on fire, flames dying out

here or never


PRECISELY  (Nøyaktig slik)


In children killed we can see

a distinct meaning


a black truth in all bright hopes


Children die of hunger and war

and indifference


a black shadow across all faces


Children killed; as real

as lovely as your own child


a black dash across all trains of thought


Children die newborn when morning

climbs the planets’ dark range


a black rose for all ceremonies


In children killed we realize what we mean

precisely: This is what we mean


such is our world



LOGIC  (Logikk)


History appears as a series of massacres


People’s pain and death create

a bond leading to the masters of earth

to the nucleus of power


A bond through the heart of the world

a particular relation a logical connection

between bloody terror and inhuman abundance:


If poverty gets hold of the little finger, it bolts down

the total hand, ruler of the world


The hand melting the earth’s fertility into gold


The Inca Indians said: “Is gold what you want?”

and poured liquid gold into the conquistadores’ throats


A pretty fatal logic

that was massacred






I DRIVE, QUEEN OF ICE    (Jeg kjører isdronning)


I drive, Queen of Ice through winter´s ocean

behind borrowed reindeer across frozen waves

heaven’s darkness streaming like a starry mane.


Swords of northern lights are drawn before light´s

battle for the love of darkness. The sleigh

flees from winter’s heart, cold and paralyzing.


I hear the King of Winter is enraged:

He´s gnawing the icicles off stars and houses

gashing heaven´s frost with mountain peaks


he´s grinding snow breasts between icy teeth

hounding the lust of darkness with a biting whip,

and I am drunk with ice, my cheeks aflame


with fierce winter fever as spiky stars stab out

through my flesh and crystalline minerals sweat

from the depths beneath my body´s skin and hair


where light awaits naked as a bridegroom,

until darkness surrender altogether, and

day arises with its beaming lucid mind.


(trans: Susan S. Senstad)


HERE  (Her)


The light surfs breakers of time

the haze of heat hangs blue clouds

in blue, let the years like a riddle


riddle themselves, I’ve forgotten

and remembered enough, now I will

be here in this where I am


Each morning awakens

new vivid days – fine!


(Trans: Susan Schwartz Senstad)
THE WORD             (Ordet)

(Hommage to Sylvia)


The knife in my troat is screaming

from genitals streaming black

the blood is mine, I spill it out


over your white tactical sheets

The womb wrings in spasms

to final birth released


I am a workshop, you are a board

with the knife I’m carving out

the word I loved you with


I nail it onto a cross

twine a rope, am ready to go

but the road is steep, the word is heavy


my shoes are poor, I don’t feel much for it

my neck is painful, I wipe my mouth

with dirt, trying to forget


It’s raining and I am thirsty

Where is the house of the deaf benefactors

were the kind food sisters are serving


from steaming vocal chords

a poem of necessities

and fill up the daily wounds


with bandaging language

If you call, I´ll be busy

I lost my feelings on the spot you stood


Relatives and strangers are pushing in

Are they out to catch my full intention?

The salt, the bread, all which I lack


to silence the scream, to stem the blood

It’s flowing all over like loving

I didn’t realize that word was fatal


(trans: LL)





SONG FOR THE EVENING (Sang til kvelden)


Give us today our black bread stone

give us also a blueberry drink

and a little cod-liver oil


And a song for the sinful evening

shuffled in a patience game of desire

dreaming us awake


We are nurtured by the sky day after day

growing strong as the oceans


EGG  (Egg)


Beastly emotions sniff the layers of instincts

Crawling lust marking meeting paths

and places for mating and birth


I started with a grip of the imminent:

A finger-hook, a milk-filled breast

an ancient hunger, a centre of lust


I drifted as plant, a growing instinct

a fruit falling through landscapes and voids

crossing timespans and changing thoughts


From the womb I jumped, an egg

here I’m drifting along, a globe of pain

a point of delight, intertwined


in confusion with other voluntary

animal sacrifice

in service of greedy life




MY REAL DAUGHTER   (Min ekte datter

WORLD YOUNG            verden ung)


She made a garland of her hair for the feast

and threw her tears to the wolves

She forged her sword-soul boyish

and traded feathers with time´s leaping heaven


She raced ahead to hunt the storms

and passionately kissed the skin of snow

She would fly with all the wild birds

animals and shadows, freely


to the light of wolves’ jaw, with polar bears´ pawprint

stamped into her memory

She wanted to win, as if her life were youthful

and blond and fresh and soft as stone


She stepped androgynously across the borders

toward the distinctly open inner land of ice

She would be among those who dive

she would carry death like a precious stone


She would live spreadeagled across life

be a fine-tuned instrument

against the world´s tortured, aging reason

She wished to torment cruelty


with her strong and mercy-glowing laughter

She would salvage joy

from that powerful despair


(trans: Susan S Senstad)
RAW  (Ratt)


Excoriated, flayed, a steaming raw

condition, a destruction

admitted into, to exile from


the bowels, to rip open language directly

in the womb, bloody harvest festival, rage

dripping red in the white snow


God is your kin, a butcher visiting

You love the meat, raw and sliced exactly

into opening and wisdom





DEMONS  (Demonene)


Childhood failed and fell away

revengeful angels shattered                   /?

like black premonitions


Darkened angel heads

encroach my house, growing

more ruthless


spreading like cancer

spiteful tongues consume

my dream of fullblown garden-life


Every month I´m bleeding

like from a wound

like from grief


Gently like a flower or a woman

to soften the grim, merciless memory

with a sacrificial grail


I scythe till my hands are blistering

my back cracking into screams

moreand more I resemble them


The demons are my gift of genius

I realize I am chosen

and barred in




WHERE IT IS (Der det er)


Cannot live there

in darkness against the heart

pumping with black blotches


Must get out and let it be told

even though it cannot be seen

and not heard


So dark it cannot be touched

by anything I know


DAD  (Far)


What is the connection:

Your body in the ground – and my

lover’s sporadic adultery?


The connection, dad?

What is a man?

Who am I?


This is the end, daddy

and I should have been your  father

from the beginning


White, smooth face

Smiling coffin in the organ peal

of death, dad, saved


from the jaw of life

which consumed your body

with decaying oblivion


I see you released

so free, noone can know how free

father, my origin, semen


Some resistance I cannot know

an unwanted tale

Your tender sadness kept still


Matrimony cannot be washed away

from earth to earth

Now you have nothing


Your desire locked into

your averted glance

on my mother!


I watched your submission

I did not go near your gentle ways

in my most frozen moment


dizzyingly: Liv!

Remote and rejected

I refused you to be loved by me


You adored the joyous and bright

I accepted, I accept

outside me, only my skin


now, you are dead

So much death your childhood

too many dead to survive


too much to lose, and me

too tiny for your history

With what was I to be growing?
I grew by myself, inwards

contained in the body, so free

you have no idea how free


My wildgrowing thoughts

no pain, no wounds to lick

only the emptiness squeaking


Now, at last, the pure body

of pain, my inner darkness

confronts its scream


Decaying dad still alive

the earth is black, finished at last

I should have been your father


and lay you down

like an early lost child

I now have found dead


You, who could not, in chilly earth

among whispering trees, whispering soul

blessed, poor – peace


such I’ve been fighting my sense

Now, I´ll lay down a feeling

on your grave, as my answer


A HOLE IN THE SKY  (Hull i himmelen)


The earth is a hole in the sky

a hole casting shadow

The moon tilts on the brink of a cloud

The wind whispers about heavenly secrets


Life is to open words on blank pages

and invest in stars for the berieved

The moon is nodding, coming too late and too early

in the rhythm we suffer from and to which we make love


Heaven has its empty apartment

to lodge our dubious prayer

it always answers it never gets quiet

in the Word of God, our hound howls to its grave




A HOUND FOR THE FROST  (En hund etter frosten)


I was a hound after frost

I growled and gnawed the ice bone clean


My master lashed the whip over my back

Stuck and leashed, I howled and cried


While he mated me with one of them

The birth made me accessible


And opened wolves’ jaws of hot revenge

The killing of the puppies was a massacre


I never will forget I loved them

I pulled the sleigh with puppy corpses


Across the drift ice of my Inner Arctic

beneath the Northers lights´ blue polished swords


And forth until the time´s open mouth

pointed out a new road home


to the starry bitter, bright sharp sweetness



BUZZING ANGELS  (Englene som svirrer)




The angel in my home behind the stone

with red light flames and glass-flower teeth

dancing skin in the eyes and wings intertwined


laughs and laughs and laughs

and it scares me

till my death




You rasp my smooth surface with your lust

I rise, confident sleepwalker

and set the music adrift


night after night like departures

I have built and burnt an angel

an ice coast and loved nobody




A scatterbrained angel so close

to the day which is burning your wings

an everyday magpie, a silver-snatcher


chasing after glitter

flapping impudent with wag-tail

and black white tricks


Solves the twinkling riddles of day

and opens my eyes

to the insatiable fall


when the wild rouge will pale

to white

and the angel shall fall




Sick of knocking on blackened suns

Tired of sinking into flaring cold oblivion

Painful to look with the closed eye reopened


The point of pain vibrates and burns, a mark stamped

on the bull´s brow, I fly in a peak

like a self-seducing flame


The angel has left me

the angel could not find me


LIVING TO DEATH  (Levende til d|d)


Chasing hands fingering

into blind alley stimulus

urges are sniffing their way


To leathergeared screams of sensation

seductive whiplashes puncture

sprawling fleshy glances


Lust for the innermost wisdom

to conceptualize completely

all alive to death











a grey green glance

slowly stopped the rain

into ice




in the eye

a closed up mirror

opens its dark


horror stricken










core of resistance

an opus

of dread

plucking the strings




autumn extinguished

the precious trees

and the children

have turned to black spikes





darkness expresses

its point





the ice has stuck

to my clothes

I cut

into everything grown

over my head








I have

smoothed my skin

into smiles

cut my glance

to insight

staring mirror

of doubt




I sliced my heart

to make sense








face at the foot of

a towering


the altitude increases

your resistance







a face

in my mouth

that never has spoken


than light

stars are cracking

you tread

for your life

is moving you slowly








the snow has put

its eye

on mine




my mouth is freezing


I light

a fire

in dreaming







ice, mirror

and scrapings


in the oral cavity

a tongue


winter to images







dark poems

flared out

into a cold life




throbbing mountain

in my eye

a gap

to be filled




stone grate









I’m writing

the snow

god of snow

my skin of stone


writing snow


points of stone



tiny parcels of

stony peace








stone head, hit


your days

a child

in your hand

a piece of bread








tangled up

in frost and snow

be still

a petrified inferno




the hands clenched


against darkness

grimly, without grief




down to the last

salt frozen

heaven´s grip


grid of

snow pinnacles

point of no pain








a stone

to end up with

after all shadows

a place

till the earth ends

a stone

to bow one’s thoughts to

all snow

reminiscent of

earth shall vanish

a thought

of stone

a place to begin









in the snow

is this a face

to recognize


trampled flat


anatomy of cold

knocked out in my heart


open gaps

around the images


stone dreamed











the childhood before

you burst


the waves question

the childhood

you have forgotten








stone in my mouth


so poor is no one here

in this house of


winter trees








mother down



father loving









empty presences


in the air

around me, holes




the lack ahead of me









stony eye


in the self portrait


cannot see

the suicide


open cracks the light








blazing agents


faces against disquiet


behind glass



through forever





stone out

the cracks in the chest





flicking like knives


like smiles

you´re going to regret









what are they waiting for


a closed human being



belongs to the dreams


the power

suddenly dangerous

may see


what I am






everywhere body


you may belong to



I gamble

to win








my breath

one winter

among other mountains

I’m high, high

on snow and labyrinths


unappeasable stone








metal dark


taste of

salty hearts










night and naked

silence in the doorway

snow infants


scent of nocturnal stones

sisters of the body



for cold








the mountain out


to be



into everywhere




I am afraid, I want to








winter desire

through ice


holes wrenched

to blade of sword


my head in ruins

has lost

its heaven








to slide erotic


through all the veins

through web of breasts

and thrusts

of hips

one enclosed moment

I slide

from hours









mounting heat



an encounter

is entering




into blossoming cities

fountains of words



crying in love with

the fragile bridges










in the glance of mine


shaking in mountains

the lustre

mountain-peaks thrust

into me









lover of cold



with black eyes


stone life I do not


spills into my hand


two beasts wake me

in the nude




no salvation

or seduction


the truth

of my moments




a cultivated frost form

in a stone garden

the moon

above the mountain




beneath the mountain

one second


in the avalanche

my face









I am pure


radiantly free

for as long as I go




I am volontary


on the horizon

and understand




the long road

of the winter









in confusion with


on your open





the darkness blue

over town



on the verge of

an inkling, a grasp









still, wide

white and wild

the silence

is filled with sound

a town

in which to look for

the mountain




further along








rock sliding



into my legs

walked out

as delight

on the horizon’s









snow laughter

blows the breath

to certainty


mountain as lights

above depths


angel steps





it is stoned


stars, angels

blown free

writing burnt

to a point


stoned out

from the silence

onto the roads

where the world walks


stone marked









stone in my mouth

golden stone

no one can crush

between teeth

cut with a knife




stone with my mouth

in golden sand

one word in the air

on starry feet






stone head, hit


stone eye, look


how much I can do



stone tongue

lick me

pure and salt

and saltier, bird

like seaweed

on skin




a pure glance

a black light

into the depths

we disappear





through the darkness

with you

my stone glance

my stone man´s

hard lips

kiss the sole life

in me

only thus

am I given


in stone










empty one border


cannot swim

the throat


I am



to death, stone







    you ignite

fires in the pain

of frankness




burn the eye

to transformation

in pain

of lust


melting the stone







rings in stones


over ridges of heaven


all is affected

in the winters’ raving mad









the dream I was flying

like tones

so far

my passion


a mountain

in me alone

was a core


now I’m sober

as drunken

into the mountain

and out







in the stone

is a swordsboy

on his way out


my soul divided


a slash of stone

like silver


sword heaven








I am still here






I saddle

and mount

beneath morning glory

and ride into golden









daughter of stone

chasing light

imprints of the beast

on watch

stone skin your scream


the truth of frost

in the well

two birds like tears

at bottom

the stone is yours


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