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03 September 2009

More Belgian Poets -

But a quick word first. It's a big week over here, the first days of school for both Helsinki and her sister -- let's call her Clover, that's the code name she likes best. Clover is taking the bus "on her own" (i.e., without her sister) for the first time. Though the bus is filled with lots of other kids going to her school. Helsinki started secondary school this morning. There was the inevitable excruciating calling out of names to get the kids into their various homerooms/form rooms/whatever they are called here. At last Helsinki was called. I discreetly blew her a kiss as she went on her way... I will do my best to not be The Embarrassing Mother.

The writing is coming along. I have been delving back into two highly recommended books, Peter Sansom's Writing Poems and Writing Poetry by Matthew Sweeney and John Hartley Williams. The second is full of exercises (which I am doing!) and the first is full of good advice (which I'm trying to take). I'll post tidbits from both in the coming weeks. I am reading out for feedback at the Brussels Writers Group tonight, the first time in front of this group for a very long time, will let you know how that goes. At the moment I'm more concerned about getting myself to the start of the meeting on time.... On Time being my nemesis.

OK. Now for another Belgian Poet. De Coninck wrote in Dutch and the original is presented alongside an English translation, at the link below.


Sleep Now
by Herma
n de Coninck

“Go to sleep now,” I say
to a daughter who is already asleep
and wakes from my words.

The thunder crashes. Perhaps
I want her scared, so I can be dad.
But there’s nothing I can do except
do nothing, together with her.

It’s like words. Things happen.
Without words they would still happen.
But then without words.















Harry de Coninck
(1944-1997)

1 comment:

  1. hopefully Helsinki and CLover had great days at school...love the names J!!!!

    ReplyDelete