Monday 11 June 2012

Another poem by Jan Lauwereyns

Ars poetica

I was pretty sure
that poetry was flowing
from my pen but was alas unable
to read my own poem.
All that appeared was
black line fragments hooked on
to each other, whorls, here and there
detached dots – taken together
a choreography of words
without meaning, grammar
without sense. But then you
are off dreaming with the right side
of your brain,
explained my guardian angel
who’d just arrived to read along
over my shoulder. The voice of the wise angel
sounded at once a bit more nervous,
keep going, lad, quick, quick, is the poem
almost complete at last? He suddenly had
Death in front of him, more precisely, the
death of, oh no, my own love.
It was no pretty death.
A priest in purple robes
led the procession through the fields of corn.
First came the cart, drawn by
a solitary horse with gleaming helmet
and three fluttering black plumes.
The horse pulled the empty cart and to the cart
a rough rope had been knotted,
on which the charred corpse hung.
It writhed with pain
at being dragged along
over the hard ground.
My guardian angel shouted
something at the unrelenting priest,
and my dead love almost seemed
about to die of shame.
Only I remained calm,
my poem could offer an outcome
for it called back
all the molecules
from their dispersion. All of them.
Plagiarism! shouted the priest.
And the corpse stayed charred,
its skin was still colourless,
and I had to start
all over again on a
blank page.

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