At the edge of the story, where something new is about to begin.
In every word I recognize you
in the words that I know I am with you
in the words that I don’t know or that have not been invented yet, we wait for each other.
In my old English dictionary there are many words between hyphen – Bindestrich and immortal – unsterblich: hypnotize, hypocrite, hypothesis, I, idealism, idiot, ignorant, immaterial, immense. To spell just a few. You are everywhere. And me too, how else would I know these words. Sometimes it is very obvious, sometimes not at all. I have used more than 100 pins to localize us. Of course, more than 100 is not enough. Of course, one dictionary cannot be enough.
“This is it: I have no language for reality. … how could one prove who one is in reality? I can’t. Do I even know myself who I am? This is the frightening experience of this period of remand: I have no language for my reality.” A passage from Max Frisch’s novel “I am not Stiller” (in my own translation). I have replaced the preceding pages with a concrete block.
Language is like cement, a story can be like concrete. Maybe that is so, because such a shape of story touches us deeply. It transmits an experience across the limits of the pronounceable.
once the promises are covered with moss
soon grass grows all over this story,
later there will be dandelion, clover,
a flock of sheep and
who knows what else will grow
where words were planted *
*the poem in the German original is slightly different in meaning
I have changed the constitution of the GDR. I cut out all the dead and abstract words. Only few words still had life inside, sometimes just one or two words per page would still speak. I gave them hold with a red thread.
Now the text is in an almost transparent constitution, even the bondage of the thoughts within is exposed. The roots of the new text continue to be visible on the backside of the remaining words.
Here is the poem of the amended constitution. Every line represents a page.
/CHAPTER 1, Political Foundation/
in town and country clasped in the lower part
the freedom of another people
The natural resources, the mines, power stations, dams and large waters, the natural wealth of the continental shelf are fundamental
air of home
values as a matter of physical culture
/SECTION II, Citizens and Communities in the Society/
every [she] every [he]
man and woman
the church of their mother tongue
/CHAPTER 3, The Unions and their Rights/
They take part in the revolution
/CHAPTERL 4, The Production Cooperatives and their Rights/
/CHAPTER 1, The People’s Chamber/
for the duration of worry
fact of presence
on the 60th day on the 45th day on the 15th day
/CHAPTER 2, The State Council/
after the reelection
/CHAPTER 3,The Council of Ministers/
It issues names
for collective cognition
/SECTION IV, Legality and Administration of Justice/
independent – bound
being listened to
the decision to turn
The constitution changed
Before I altered the complete constitution I had ripped out some pages and changed them separately. You can see them here and here. The words that I had cut out became the base of my suggestions for an organically shaped constitution, like the one below.