Monday, 19 February 2018

The thrush again by Hans Andreus

Hans Andreus

The thrush again.
There wasn't an evening
that he lost his way:
his soundtrack

between the houses
moved unfailingly synchronized
with in this
reality the in-

escapable effect
of clouds, sky and
setting sun

and while I lay still
as if I were dead,
sang he. He sang.

Original title: 'De lijster weer' - from: Om de mond van het licht. Een kleine case history - Uitgeversmaatschappij Holland BV - Haarlem - 1973

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Two poems by Bert Schierbeek

Bert Schierbeek

it's much worse
than you think
if you think
it's even worse

when it rains
let her not get wet

and if it storms
won't she get a cold

and I also think
that that thinking
doesn't help

because you'll never get wet
again nor get a cold

because it rains
nor is windy ever
more for you

Original titles: 'Kijk' and 'Ik denk' - from the collection 'De Deur', Uitgeverij De Bezige Bij, Amsterdam - 1972

Saturday, 10 February 2018

Landscape by H. Marsman

H. Marsman [1899-1940]

In the pastures grase
the peaceable creatures;
the herons glide
over shiny lakes,
the bitterns stand
by a dark pond;
and in the washland
the horses gallop
with waving tails
through rolling grass.

(Original title: 'Landschap' - from: 'Verzameld Werk', 1938 - Uitgeverij Querido, Amsterdam)

Friday, 9 February 2018

Terror by Lucebert

Lucebert [1924-1994]

finally the empty road
the endless empty road
the empty stones the thousand and one
white steps the split stones
the very long white road
the extremely stony road the extremely
split stones the endless
jog the glass the stones the white
recently dug legs of passers-by
right behind the brushwood
nothing conspicuous behind the hills
deserters are plugged
a general breaks wind
over the road moves a stinking cloud
the corpses find themselves between the white stones
remarkably well hidden
artistically inlayed between the split stones
every split is a surprised eye
and the hundreds the endless empty eyes
are from nobody from nobody are
also the storms of violence
at times they are disguised as closed cars
slowly over the empty white road
but then it is also certain that they will vanish
suddenly in the clear bloodstain right on the horizon

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Three poems by Eddy van Vliet

La gare forestière
(Paul Delvaux)

The wood smells pause. Between the leaves
darkness keeps asleep. The sky
fills with light yellow defence.

On the rural platform the waiting
has started. The destinations do not run out
for the girls who made up all the arrivals.

The rails are carrying like parallel running
servants their ponderous masters.
For everybody waiting they bring an absentee.

Eddy van Vliet

For Gert B.

It is Easter Monday. The magnolia flowers.
The garden wall seems to glow gently.
Just for a moment I sense the winter
when I take the garden chairs out of the cellar.

What is in the bud, wants to open
before nightfall. As in a race
green holds the first place.
Nothing is hesitating.

The exception is my hand that touches the tree-bark.
The branch that it breaks, contains no sap.
It is clear: the pear tree is dead
and from what I have heard this morning, so are you.

The synagogue on the Koornmarkt

I have come to Delft, not for its blue
or its tower. Because only what was lost,
has the right of existence.

Ornament that lives in a pencil sketch.
Light spots on the eastern wall.
Tolerance made evident from a speech

Much was devoted to what had disappeared. A collection.
The words of a poet from The Hague. Lotteries
and the whole life of an unmarried engineer.

The specification provided room for eighty Jews.
In fear they threw themselves down.
The occupiers registered
a hundred and thirty eight.
Twelve returned.

Oh Eternal one, I love the throne of Your house that
turned into a storage place for rusting barrels.

Original titles: La gare forestière, Voor Gerd B. and De synagoge aan de Koornmarkt  - From: De tweede ronde, Tijdschrift voor literatuur, Herfst 1989 - Vlaams nummer - Uitgeverij Bert Bakker BV, Amsterdam.

Saturday, 3 February 2018

Departure by Hans van den Bos

                      29th July, 2002

Along artificial landscapes
made for unwitting creatures,
the road leaves, in a tropical 
heat, a long past behind. 

In the mirror the skyline 
of the city, proudly rebuild 
after brutal assault from the east, 
fades like a mirage.

Endless lowlands rush past
– an accelerated poem,
until smoking and flaming
pillars of capitalism
become manifest in the low sun.

Far beyond the last city,
the last link to the coast,
a sultry south-west wind, that often 
fling waves against dunes and dykes,
brings now the salty smell of the sea.

A ship on which many forever left
before, slips slowly between the jetties,
away from the coast.
A final look over the yellow dunes,
then only sky and water remain.  

Original Title: Vertrek