Thursday 22 March 2018

F. Starik: 'Zweef'


Als kind kon ik ’s nachts het raam uit vliegen
ik spreidde mijn armen en dreef door de nacht
als een meeuw op de wind, het was niet moeilijk en niet zwaar
ik spreidde simpelweg mijn armen en zweven maar.

Freud zegt hierover: een gesublimeerd verlangen naar macht
ach, wist ik veel, ik was een kind, ik was veertien jaar.

Nu hoor ik vaak een bel gaan in mijn hoofd
soms de zoemer van de buitendeur, soms
het schorre belletje van boven
sinds ik geen wekker meer bezit
rinkel ik mezelf wakker in de nacht
of zegt iemand keihard hallo in mijn oor
het klinkt zeer levensecht maar
nooit staat er iemand naast mijn bed.

Ik ben het zelf die de bel produceert
die de wekker wekt
zichzelf telefoneert
ik ben het zelf die hallo zegt

vliegen doe ik allang niet meer.


As a child I could at night fly out the window
I spread my arms out and drifted through the night
like a seagull on the wind, it wasn’t hard or difficult
I simply spread my arms out and just hovered.

Freud says about this: a sublimated desire for power
well, come on, I was only a child, I was fourteen years old.

Now I often hear a bell go off in my head
sometimes the front-door buzzer, sometimes
the rasping little bell from upstairs
since I no longer possess an alarm clock
I jingle myself awake at night
or someone bawls hello in my ear
it sounds extremely true to life but
there’s never anyone standing by my bed.

I am the one who produces the bell
who wakes the alarm clock
who telephones himself
I am the one who says hello

I stopped flying a long time ago.

Tuesday 20 March 2018

Erik Lindegren: 'mannen utan väg' - last ten sonnets


but when daybreak comes the city changes completely
the endless jubilation of saboteurs rings in the celebration’s ears

parks and streets and houses stray drunkenly past
and chat about cheerful memories of the bygone plague

views landscapes people shouts trumpets
and crown all that is dead to the charlatan himself:

my eye deceived us it sought only the bottom
the wall so it could appear as conqueror

that sacrificed lives my solitary life in a gravel pit
and blood and meaning seep down into the earth

I compared myself with us and nothing tallied
I killed you and me so that we both should live

with human lips heavy with death we were forced
into this smile of self-satisfied idiocy


oh wished-for cramp with swing music and plundering hands
and love breast to breast and the ether mask’s hiss

you rival of invalids the dance of death’s small revelry
with horrors in advance and simplification’s bandage

you trampler of fabrics with hymns of high heels
and nothing that manages to gain meaning or conclusion

your surprise only gives us the same familiar
spirit of homelessness that visits our magnet

and seduction gives death and space a moonlight solo
blue mantles of crystal that maybe provide coolness

to the leaves’ green meshes where the caught eye stares
at the fall of the scales of flesh from the clay of empty hands

when naked to the waist we trespass
in the river of death and the packed halls of pain


the invisible one within us tears apart all space
and all race-tracks become part of the measurable nothing

and the seconds turn to stone and the perspectives run
into the suns of cruelty with the shadows’ thirsting dwarfs

that cut into their leather flesh to give their skeletons air
and surrender the event to breaking-point’s rollers

until the vision invokes the darkness of the jagged peaks
from the armchair of eternal rest: a denying continent

that on a shield of sun and madness raises its reflection
in an advantageous moment for our eternal blindness

that rocks the parasite of sinking down on the barrel-organ’s waves
and writes in mockery on the jealous rock of the future:

embalm the galley slave’s worn-out oars in the hall of amazement
embalm the sublimation and the tragedian in slow-motion


among the corals’ stiff mouth and whole-hearted dissension
among the murderers’ breathing that shrouds everything in mist

among the lies that pierce through the eye of truth
till it stares more stiffly than that of the one lashed to death

among the moments that glide along the tracks of torture
and disappear with a jerk into the hollow passage of the unreal

oh silence of black tears in poisoned prison towers
with the nightmare’s smelting furnace for captives’ magma-torment

oh blown-off hand and the parched recitative of death
in a golden coffer for withered leaves and revolutions

oh confused voice from the string of the broken bow
do not flee with your echo into the protected nook of the future

but decipher instead the illegible writing: capture the swishing
fall of the hammer towards a fate that as yet was not yours


after wandering through death’s tunnels it was time
for hope to drive us to a new despair

we felt how we moved in a machine’s greasy air
in a despised acrobat and the eternally human

inside the navel there gleamed a chromium-plated tragedy
and an onlooker rocked in the false rope of the curtain

a prompter stood bending over the old chasm
so at to synchronise the beat of fate with reality

but we felt how the disclosure always keeps us waiting
until it is too late and the tears have already fallen

how the heart always rejoices too early and slips
on the stage cluttered with watered choirs

how the intrigue collapses but the tension remains
until a new walk begins for that most destroyed


the song burns and I wipe the red gleam from my forehead
hope is crushed and falls in the sea from wrongly dated towers

my sole fate longs for its star
but no beams are let through memory’s sudarium

in this mist where the victims drift aimlessly in their circles
where no one walks flashes from the clouds but where I see

how the cry of distress does not even leave a speck of dust behind
in this deep furrow torn open by at any rate somebody’s tears

and tired of the vanquished heart always having to pay
with an unconscious forgery for once more wanting to live

but still with dreams to be scoured clean in another water
like the roots of the biggest trees reach down to water

that can long murmur of centuries of water-life in the soughing
of springs where the depths finally vanquish themselves


gasping in our own net our impotence explodes
and the consuming lover’s hatred of himself

disguised as an abyss our fate rises up
prepared for something more than the harbour of destruction

reluctantly the torso frees itself from night’s stranglehold
forced by darkness to unbelievingly recall the light

over the dull eyes spreads the mist of humility
and the many ready travellers must wait for better visibility

dissolved into truth the dust of immortality sticks
fast to the bumblebee abdomen of denying illusions

the pierced zenith embraces the flutes of a shadow
here in bleeding outer space glides the rain’s whisper

that birth now awaits us at the ford of the seeing stones
that out in the water someone stands shoulder to shoulder with god


I dream of the memory of the hind’s hoof in the maze
as the word of one spared to the one who has saved his life

of mirrors and running water like smoke of eternity
like faith stacked on faith in misery’s removal-load

of everything that has been repeated and grown into unreality
of the red lips’ song of that loved and missed

oh memory: oh fury and god that melts everything
down to nothing and hunts the tangible to death

tell someone if perhaps the days’ feet are moving forwards
on the drum of truth with a dawn for us

tell the wind whirling between the gates of the horizon
seeking its position between hovering and gravity

tell the wanderer travelling yet deeper into the world
seeking his talisman of darkness and light


not you retreat that always beg for yourself the gift of coherence
when the violin follows its orbit round the heart’s dark planet

that turns its face towards us silvered with strains of sound
that turns its face away from us to the struggle in the dark

to you my chaos my gleaming home that I bless
and hate or indifferently assimilate in the smile’s currents

that pours its well into my eye where I roam the earth
ready to travel and ready to stay: weighing death

in my hand and life in my love and with the mountain of faith
before me like a staff with no shepherd planted in god

while the guillotine in the blue heart of the blue twilight
separates my body from the desolately drifting clouds

so that I force the dark into a long and liberating embrace
attain the happiness that is dictated by everything and nothing


and the one who understands nothing shall remember nothing
of a time that adorns its wounds with tablets of copper

but the one who stays shall not take root without memory
and three heavy steps in the empty ravine where the vulture

now broods on stone upon stone in blood’s heavy building
and the one who journeys shall have no other aim

than to discover the star waiting to be discovered
the star of the new creation that but few have glimpsed

yet to whom I dedicate this our truth before death
this rat-trap’s abyss and the long hour of waiting

this artificial calm that time has branded on my forehead
this splintered faith whose shards will yet moulder and grow

into future’s dream and the hind’s dream in the maze
and the word of one spared to the one who has saved his life