Distant greeting by telephone

I call you on the telephone:
Good morning! – How are you, my dear?
I’m listening to your voice’s tone.
It’s lovely, soothing and so very clear.

Through wire I kiss you on your distant ear,
You’re mine – aren’t you, my sweet?
How ever I hurt you when I was near:
Please do forgive me – I entreat!

You’re fine? – Great! – Worried about money?
Never you mind, the cost is not that much.
I have to go now and hang up, my honey.
Next time I’ll write to get in touch.

Joachim Ringelnatz (1883-1934)

Translated from the German (which can be found here) by Johannes Beilharz.

This poem was written in the days when not everybody had a telephone and definitely before the advent of free local calls or flat rates. If Ringelnatz were alive today, he'd have to rethink and write about wireless communication and e-mail. No doubt he would.

Copyright of translation by Johannes Beilharz 2008.

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