Saturday 2 May 2020

H.H. Ter Balkt: 'Portret van Maria Trip'


The gleam of pearls and amaryl you
everywhere discern here, and of gold. ‘I wear
rosettes too. I once saw how a lamb dropped
straight from a ewe; the miser makes my neck

– rising from the stiff lace like ivory –
a rather too sheeplike unwashed yellow;
the town and street so sunlit now and the faint flush
of rosacea he forced from the paint. 

Deep in this canal house in oaken gloom
my eyes red-rimmed; have I cried?’
The sword hilt at her hand is not just there for show.

Courage and stalwart spirit fierce fend off decay.
I am the moth that sheers past satin sheen.
There’s lustre in her gaze that will not yield.

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