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Lara Ermer

City without sea

Nuremberg is feeling maritime, today. A little Italy with a scent of bratwurst.

With great effort, beaches were provided, at the lake and at the river. Even in the city centre, one is built up every year, sand grain to sand grain, sweat to sweat. In only a few weeks’ time, everything will be tidied up. Sisyphus is wearing flip-flops today.

Now, however, there is the beach, ice cream is dripping, sunscreen is sticking. Only the sea keeps us waiting – how far is it supposed to rise anyways? At times, one is ordering a drink. Refuelling liquid, sweating on. Mostly beer. But sometimes, one gets adventurous here: A Gin and Tonic maybe, that could be refreshing!

A good Gin and Tonic comes without bells and whistles or cocktail umbrellas. A good Gin and Tonic needs Gin, Tonic, ice, and a slice of cucumber. In 2017, the cucumber harvest held off. Not enough liquid, all vaporized. In 2017, a good Gin and Tonic came without bells and whistles and cocktail umbrellas and the slice of cucumber. But at least, there was beer.

A good beer comes without bells and whistles and added flavours. A good beer needs good hops, nothing else. Those who live here foster and nurture their hops. Those who live here are proud of their beer. The heat, however, is not a good gardener. It steals flavouring, steals harvests. In 2017, there was too little hops. In 2017, a good beer came without bells and whistles and with less aroma.

Nuremberg is wearing worry lines today. With great effort, the climate is cared for. There are parks grown on rooftops and parking lots. A piece of nature with a scent of asphalt. 

And after the work is done, a beer.


Lara Ermer, Germany

Nominated by:

N2025 Bid Office European Capital Of Culture 2025, Germany

About the Artist:

Lara Ermer is a poetry slammer, author and comedian based in Frankfurt. Still organizing cultural events around her birthtown Fürth (neighbouring city of Nuremberg), she was awarded the Cultural Promotion Prize of Fürth in 2018. In March 2019 the Metropolitan Region of Nuremberg named her artist of the month. „City without sea“ was translated by Teresa Reichl.

Type of Work: Short literary text
About the Work:

Being based in Nuremberg, the climate crisis can sometimes feel very abstract and as if it was far away. But diving deeper into the topic I found out that the rising temperatures of our beloved summers have already had some impact on the harvests.

Jury Reflection:

Great poetry and deliciously grotesque!