Self-interview Buried underneath deep layers of endless self-interview about the why, what and how. I dig, have dug, delved, bury, burrow, have buried and so on. Searching for the sound of the spade on stone Until the point came, or better a subtle transition, The moment when the riddle began to lead its own life. I did not strike a stone. No reflection upon reflection is where a new world had begun Just like water or clouds that are seen and unseen at the same time. You can pass through. So that you wonder whether they are truly there. Reflections of a fictitious world in your head. On its head. There is no end Of course, it will end © Ilse Vos translation: Trevor Scarse
Henk Dillerop, a new addition to the RIXT collective, was the RIXT poet of the month in April. You can read his original Frisian poems from that month here. The translation of one of them – ‘form’ – is published here.
form does emptiness have form she asks lying on the beach he thinks gets up walks to the sea and punches holes in the waves do feelings have form as well she asks he thinks and with his hands squeezes air in between the waves does colour have form too he draws her name in curly letters in the foam and life he gathers up seashells his hands full and love does love have a form he keeps still looks at her minutes ticking by doesn’t move a muscle she perceives © Henk Dillerop translation: Trevor Scarse
HUMAN BEING he is clean like a river but slibs up at the mouth he lets his Swiss shepherd fly after a stick on the cinder path rhymes a mallard not with the man he is fair like a bullet at the edge of the city he twirls the steel for the arena, where he will sing in canon he’s pitch perfect like a rock skims across the old canal smooth and flat is his word © Elmar Kuiper translation: Trevor Scarse
coat so many old things fall out of your coat pockets: plasters, coins pills for tranquillity who put them there when you weren’t looking? or was it you but forgot once sleepless nights because of money no piece of clothing contains so many secrets as an old coat with the pepper smell of sweat and rain nothing falls better into place than litter on a worn-out tile floor © Ina Schroders-Zeeders translation: Trevor Scarse
late autumn in the autumn I’m able to write if writing is a form of dying until the telling turns it into a feeble infatuation I prune wild imaginings cleanse my eyes bloated from drawn-out days the ambition burns brightly for a moment, then lets go sinks into a swoon after a sprinkling of frosty and white in the autumn I’m able to write if writing has to be an act of consolation © Syds Wiersma translation: Trevor Scarse
apostate once the national coach was a pious, loyal church attendee, until his first wife passed away he turned away from his belief, did not set foot in a church anymore strange, when you think about it all the misery in the world, the famine and starvation of millions of small children in Africa, the enormous slaughter in his own country’s bioindustry, Auschwitz and you name it none of that was a reason for him to leave the church, but when his own wife passed, he was so incensed, that he wanted nothing to do with God anymore fortunately for Dutch football he does know a lot about the game © Sipke de Schiffart translation: Trevor Scarse