Artworks and poetry: Kirsten Haabeth 2018-2022

Poetry translated by Hilde Morris


Og så noen linjer om november
som knapt eksisterer
tømt for farge

høstens ytterkant overrasker likevel

gjenglemt frukt
på naken grein

rødt og svart


Close by the moon
we′re far from earth

a shine

while boats slowly
leave the ports
to meet the sky
with flashing signals

out there

at sea somewhere

Then I set out to swim
with the moon
now it sails away
to a hiding in clouds

stay with me

remain at the mountain ridge
nice and round

I need your escort
till morning comes


Now time flies on
past sand and beaches
across the sea

to brighter coasts
before it joins

for a while on earth

with the one
who wanders

alone out there

Closing time passed
yet someone arrives
knocking on locked doors
listening to echoes of voices long gone

finding a podium

The Little Orchestra

The little orchestra has set the stage
uniforms donned
conductor’s baton raised

the train will thunder into the station
tone deaf, untuned, full

for teeming chaos
for those running blindly,
hither and dither

For overfilled platforms
loudspeaker voices
and busy bluster

for the lonely and mourning hearts
who have lost the sparkling gift of joy


the train
thunders in
to the station


Long Distance

We are not homeless

but homeless
with infinite space
to roam

only seldom do we see
face to face

Two at the station

The moment passed
the train left
leaving two at the station

they found a crossing
the right track
bound for home

some seconds of empty silence

the light was left behind
on the platform

Somewhere Along the Line

Somewhere along the line
noted in the passing


the music
follows the tracks

some notes

does not

Beyond the Picture

Beyond the picture
between the lines,
in the silence
the pauses and the parentheses

The Waiting

From my window
I glimpse someone
waiting for
the daylight

perhaps a gust of wind
will invite the dainty leaves
to dance along the streets

perhaps hurried footsteps
will give the morning hope

but now
in the quiet of the night


Shadow Dialogue

Voices in the dark
behind doors
under bridges

dialogue along the roads,
across the borders
along the walls
barely heard
finely tuned

She is Sleeping

she is sleeping
will not awaken
cover with a blanket
take care

Yellow Asphalt

not heard, not told
etched into
yellow asphalt

Before Departure

Before departure
no man’s land
the platform on the other side
nearly empty

is not allowed

take me along!

take me along
take me along
take me along
like a song
like a heartbeat
along the railway tracks
miles away
through open landscapes
until I can breathe



what remained when we left

drawn to another center
we hoped to find
flower fields
wider views
romping grounds

now who colours the place we left
climbs on the monkey bars
plays ball between structures
skips on one foot
in dangerous play
on the railroad tracks

Arrival with No Port

Arrival with no port
no speeches
no brass fanfares
the mayor is off on a cruise
the band is on a tour


A signal
to the other side
is received
a warning, a shout without words


silence spreads
as nighttime falls

En Route

En route to another place
rhythmic and blind

beyond the
you leave
the scene


Artworks and poetry: Kirsten Haabeth 2018-2020

Poetry translated by Hilde Morris 2020