Friday, 27 November 2009

The Dutch poet Menno Wigman

The swimming baths at the Den Dolder clinic

There are emotions of a fascist kind.
The father who hits out but can’t tell why,
the son half-choked who scratches photos through.

The loveliest idiot I ever saw
lay on his back, a total universe.
No father got to grasp this basket case

that drifted through the pool like one in space,
no mother poked his bowl of fish around.
And skewed and pale and wise he swam. Swam sound.

For a workshop discussion of the translation of this poem go to here.

This is one of five poems translated in 2008.
For all five poems go to here.
For earlier translations of Wigman poems go to here.

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