Greece is like a glittering city
though only in a political speech
but Italians believe in bella figura
& mis-use the beach. In Germany there's
Kraftwerk & acres of expressionist kitsch.
Oil-rich Norwegians don't need to ski
they just like it & Iceland is famous
for its past. Doing their physical jerks,
a quiet pride permeates the Swedes.
Denmark is neither vivid nor abrupt
& Belgians have a ringside seat
to observe the behaviour of the Dutch.
The French invented finesse but it's
their self-regard that intrigues us.
We pity the English, though they get on
our wick, pretending to understand us
& Scotland is old-fashioned like a dowry
but unusual, like nice police. Mention
Ireland & you've already said enough
The Spaniards are not relaxed about sex
& tourists are attracted to this. Some
Portugese exist entirely on a diet of fish
but rich cakes, finance & guest workers
sustain the Swiss. Consult my By Trailbike
& Hot-Air Ballon Through Middle Europe
for details of the Austrians & Czechs
but don't forget Bavaria's Octoberfest
or that Rococo architecture was designed
to be passed out under, pissed, & it's
aesethically edifying to do this.
For the rest; give Russia a miss,
the Poles will appreciate hard currency
but only as a gift & the fleshpots of
Split will leave you a physical wreck.
This guide stops short at the Balkans
as it omits the Finns. I won't apologise
-many quides to Australia include
New Zealand or leave out Tasmania
No doubt some thorough American manual
can give you the lowdown on Europe's margins
but mine, designed for only one traveller,
is better written & much shorter.
Besides, if you remove the art, Europe's
like the US, more or less a dead loss
& while convenient for walking
& picturesque, like the top of a Caran
D'Ache pencil case or a chocolate box
what do you make of a landscape
that reminds you of itself? Is this why
the people are sure they're typical
not standard? I can't advise you on this
but I know how I enjoyed myself; though
knocked out by what convinced me
'Great Art' without inverted commas is
(but not because of this) I hung around
with other Australians & hit the piss.