Miyazaki and the Panther

This is a teaser to my upcoming short story collection “Almost Happy”, hopefully to be published  by the end of 2021, yay! Almost Happy is all about that intensity we call love, the joys and wisdoms it brings and how it makes us who we are – with or without a Happy Ending. It consists of four novellas and five short stories which act as a kind of intermission. The novellas all begin with a poem as a prologue, capturing the heart of the story. This here is one of my favourites:

Miyazaki and the Panther is the story of a young single woman who desperately tries to will her fate to find love. She retreats to the virtual world, treating human relationships like a consumer good. As she more and more looses touch with the real world, a black panther appears and she falls into a deep depression. The Panther continuously haunts her and drives her into a destructive affair. But right when the future looks pretty grim, it is art who comes to save her. More specifically the art of Hayao Miyazaki …

The Poem in the Prologue is leaning on a famous work by my most favorite poet, I am pretty sure you will recognize it 😉

Enjoy the teaser – and I can’t wait to see Almost Happy out there!


Prologue – The Inner Panther 


 Her gaze against the sweeping of the screen,

has grown so weary,

Yet she can’t let go.


In it, there seem to be a thousand chances,

and yet behind those

Thousand chances not a world.


The constant soft and subtle hum,

that vibrates in the smallest circle

Moves like a dance around a core

In which the will of fate is standing stunned.


Only at times her pupil’s curtain rises, a child’s laughter or a barking dog?

– the image enters then.

Yet without a virtual thumb’s judgment,

unliked, unrated and unshared,

It lingers in the stillness of her limbs,

And in the heart ceases to be.


(inspired by “The Panther” by Rainer Maria Rilke”)

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