Klaus Hnilica
Thursday February 10th, 2011

The Vine Louse and the Garden of Eden

Carl and Gerlinde (III)

Carl had never thought very highly of all the nonsense they were talking about the Garden of Eden!

Acryl painting "Vine Louse in Front of Succulent” by Martina Roth

Well, to be sure, his favourite coffeehouse had that very name – and Gerlinde, too, sometimes went on about it. But so what?

Yet, a short time ago, they actually hung a strange painting of a Vine Louse by Martina Roth directly in front of his nose as he sat in the coffeehouse “Garden of Eden”.

This very Mrs. Roth actually said – you are not going to believe it – that the louse really had something to do with the Garden of Eden …

Isn’t that just ridiculously hilarious?

It happens both to man and beast:
they sometimes have a mental feast,
where this world is a better place,
no money, always love and grace.
The land of milk and honey gives,
and everybody simply – lives.
When thus you dream,
of milk and cream,
you might just hear a voice or two
declaring “Eden’s Garden“ true.

To Carl, however, this sounds sour,
he does not like such mental power.
You talk too much! I get confused!
I cannot grip it, feel abused!
He likes to see what can be seen,
to smell the “Garden” is he keen …
If you can sit and talk away,
enjoy a nice hot summer’s day,
and show Gerlinde, when it’s cold
how people sat and talked of old.

He likes his coffee nice and soft,
not far from home: his cosy loft!
Where flowers bloom and biscuits smell
and cappuccino is what they sell,
you like to look upon your life
as something easy to survive.
No matter what you drink today,
the good mood will not go away.
Why not enjoy some Spanish wine,
while looking at Geraniums fine?
Hydrangea seem to sprout from plates,
you think you walk to Heaven’s gates.
They all know Carl, the place is nice,
This “Garden Eden“ knows no vice!

And here he can continue dreaming,
with nothing evil ever screaming.
A glass of beer, filled to the brim
is truly Eden here for him.
This is where lions are so tame,
they would consider blood a shame.
The panther joins the gnu in play,
and rabbits take the cubs away;
Some insects dance on tortoise shells,
and when it’s hot, they hide in wells..
The tiger is Gazelle’s friend,
there is just harmony no end…

The louse will never touch the leaf,
that covers certain parts of Eve.
For Adam, they were quite taboo:
forbidden, danger, outlawed, too!
Until now Carl can see his doom,
the snake appears right in the room,
and tells the louse to suck away,
so Adam’s lust will come today.
It does as bidden, sucks all day,
the hair on Eve begins to sway.
What Adam saw as just some creature,
is now for him an urge of nature.
He does what seems to Carl quite normal,
and what the Bible cites quite formal.
What can he do but go on dreaming
of that one thing that gives us meaning?
For as the louse sucks on and on,
a beetle comes and thinks: I won!
It takes what fed the louse so well,
the leaf was lost, at last it fell!

Since beetles take their time at dinner,
this one did not look any thinner,
it ate the louse, felt full and kind,
and never saw the frog behind!
But frogs are easy prey for some
when not aware that storks have come.
Yet who said storks and swans alike,
will live too long when hyenas strike?
The beast has teeth and does its best,
but is as helpless as the rest,
when Boa swallows it quite whole,
till crocodile says: change of role…

Carl smiles and takes another sip,
he has his beer firm in his grip,
„If Eden means they eat each other,
why should I ever even bother?“
He spoke out loudly, never knew,
Gerlinde heard and up she flew:
she worries, since she knows her Carl
was quite confused last year in Marl…
But he just smiles his secret smile,
imagines Gerlind for a while,
without the leaf, himself the louse,
and calls: let us go home, my spouse!

(Translated by EG)

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