Klaus J. Gerken

it holds no purpose that the right
ravages the left so the left can ravage the right
and no one gains an inch where they should make strides
i always thought politics was a duty and not a free ride
but i must be mistaken if a talk show host
is more important than a sacrificial ghost
we don’t just slaughter but we relish so we feel
each moment of the pain that makes us feel so real
as long as we don’t suffer and make sure
like the slogan hung above the door
“arbeit macht frei” but it’s them who work
and the one’s left in charge lurk
in halls of glory with money in their pants
to dance the tango dance and dance

kjg 104pm 16 apr 2015

Klaus J. Gerken is on Facebook. Contact him on and read latest poems in Ygdrasil – a Journal of the poetic Arts.


oh vile insomnia what hast thou wrought
there’s no commitment to a tactile thought
the mind’s a screaming thunderbolt that blinds
the vision that the vision leaves behind

torture tossed the bed’s a grave
that devils shovel close to save
the soul i cannot here relate
what happens but it’s way too late

salvation is not what is tossed
upon the hearth and then is lost
in flames to heaven god saves all

to go to hell and that’s not small
upon the meaning of the cross
that some would worship with their loss

kjg 1228pm 13 apr 2015

Klaus J. Gerken is on Facebook. Contact him on and read latest poems in Ygdrasil – a Journal of the poetic Arts.


he travels to italy
and eats pizza and spaghetti
he travels to france
and orders hamburger and
french fries (he’s in
france after all!)
he travels to england
and doesn’t know what to order
“they’re so strange over there
they have nothing we eat here”
he travels to las vegas and says
“what a fantastic place!
they have delicious food
from all over the world!”

kjg 550pm 5 dec 2014

The Rose

i cannot deny an arrangement
that shattered what dead men reveal
the living can no more reclaim it
than a raft could be made out of steel
it’s the tale of an angel that wandered
from the realms of the heavens to hell
were this angel not love i’d deny her
for she left me alone when i fell

i stumbled upon a commitment
which made her and i into one
body and soul knit together
tight as the tightest of bonds
but somehow through time’s interaction
somehow through love that was lost
somehow through greed and it’s savior
we bargained and ventured the cost

the night is as dark as it’s ugly
the bed is surprisingly cruel
no blanket to warm this reaction
no lover to wake up this fool
the dream of a rose turns to anger
when the rosebushes gather a crown
and this madman adrift on a feather
swallows his pride just to drown

a broken love
a token love
a flavour of what has been lost
tell me my love
what is above
and what is revealed in the frost?

Copyright (c) 1989 Klaus J. Gerken

The Spirit of CATHAR

Sheep graze on the hill below Montsegur
Not far from where the martyrs prayed
The shepherd does not wonder much
about the place: he knows. He says:
‘It was after all my friends and family
‘who died in flames before the dogs.
‘I still retain no love for catholics.
‘I am cathar. My life is in these hills.

‘I sometimes, when the sheep are grazing
‘walk into the citadel and early in the morning
‘when the dew is fresh and air is crisp
‘I can hear the whispering, and these poor souls
‘surround you, telling of the horror
‘and the martyrdom the goodmen faced.’

Copyright (c) 1992 Klaus J. Gerken


the statutes of deliverance don’t move
they are solid forms like marble angels
in the vatican proud to be on display
only the devil can bring them to life

there is no such thing as understanding
there is only the interpretation
the simple fool will laugh at anything
the madman laughs at nothing

the presumption of innocence is not a fact
but a false accusation
the cup is passed from mouth to mouth

in the wild hemlock grows and is not poison
only laws can make it poison
and there is no substitution for deliverance

kjg 517pm 14 nov 2014

I can’t sleep

the merry-go-round makes me dizzy
the clowns are like wolverines
the messengers of destruction
flap their golden wings
the walls are flames of madness
dragons of effort reveal their shape
to the savage mind delivered
upon the altar or the stake
i do not tremble without endeavour
i know the future well
it is hollow and it strangles
what professes to be a path
past the graves of time’s repast
nightmares need no sleep to last

kjg 544am 6 nov 2014

Klaus J. Gerken is on Facebook. Contact him on and read latest poems in Ygdrasil – a Journal of the poetic Arts.