Sunday, 2 January 2011

Poem by the Dutch poet Esther Jansma

Soil survey

This is ancient ground, time is slowed right down,
here all of its moments lie in being
past, the chaos of centuries, stacked,
stratified and brought to order. We read

for example a floor in the heart of the city
far below ground level, in the surrounding walls
the toppled brackets of vaults,
a door opening blocked with the reclining

dashes of stones – someone has stood
here on shoes that have never been found
in the dank twilight of his cellar
on flagstones that made no one stop

and thought: that door must go. For he had time,
it was continuously now. He built and
altered buildings, his present was eternal
and there was so much to want, to hold on to.

No comments: