Pol Hoste, Flannery O'Connor, Jaime Sabines, Peter Van Straaten, Toni Cade Bambara, Jacques Bens
We gaan voorbij aan conjuncturen, genietend van
verfijnd textiel, lezen bedrukte stof uit verre
loonlanden en eten zandgebak. Soms komt een liedje
aangewaaid, een stem of pauk of gamelan. Dan verliezen
we de draad. De naald wijst naar het noorden.
Een plantkundige snijdt een fluit van rozelaar,
meeldauw smaakt naar torren. Ter bestudering van de
biotoop tript in zijn spoor de cocaïnehoer. Zij spant
haar nylondraden. Mijn tongpunt glijdt langs feilloos
werk, het zuiverste gekoelde boren, een zilverpijn.
Ieder heeft zijn werktuigen.
Pol Hoste (Lokeren, 25 maart 1947)
Uit: A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories
“The grandmother didn't want to go to Florida. She wanted to visit some of her connections in east Tennes- see and she was seizing at every chance to change Bailey's mind. Bailey was the son she lived with, her only boy. He was sitting on the edge of his chair at the table, bent over the orange sports section of the Journal. "Now look here, Bailey," she said, "see here, read this," and she stood with one hand on her thin hip and the other rattling the newspaper at his bald head. "Here this fellow that calls himself The Misfit is aloose from the Federal Pen and headed toward Florida and you read here what it says he did to these people. Just you read it. I wouldn't take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it. I couldn't answer to my conscience if I did."
Bailey didn't look up from his reading so she wheeled around then and faced the children's mother, a young woman in slacks, whose face was as broad and innocent as a cabbage and was tied around with a green head-kerchief that had two points on the top like rabbit's ears. She was sitting on the sofa, feeding the baby his apricots out of a jar. "The children have been to Florida before," the old lady said. "You all ought to take them somewhere else for a change so they would see different parts of the world and be broad. They never have been to east Tennessee."
The children's mother didn't seem to hear her but the eight-year-old boy, John Wesley, a stocky child with glasses, said, "If you don't want to go to Florida, why dontcha stay at home?" He and the little girl, June Star, were reading the funny papers on the floor.
"She wouldn't stay at home to be queen for a day," June Star said without raising her yellow head.
"Yes and what would you do if this fellow, The Misfit, caught you?" the grandmother asked.
"I'd smack his face," John Wesley said.”
Flannery O'Connor (25 maart 1925 – 3 augustus 1964)
MY HEART EMBARKS from my body to your body
on its last voyage.
Offspring of light,
ageless waters that in you, woman astray, are born.
Come to my thirst. Now.
After everything. Before.
Come to my thirst long savoured
in mouths, scarce well-springs.
I love that rapt harp that lulls wild children
in your womb.
I love that taut moisture that arouses you,
that watery moisture that burns you.
Woman, gentle muscle.
The skin of a kiss between your breasts’
roams in my mouth
and measures blood.
You, too. And it isn’t too late.
We can still die in each other’s arms:
this no-man’s land is yours and mine.
Woman, hatred’s tenderness, ancient mother,
poison, flame, absence, bitter,
bitter sea, I want to enter,
penetrate, cross you.
Each cell is female, open country,
parted waters—a thing that opens.
I was born to enter you.
I’m the arrow lodged in the loin of a dying gazelle.
I’m poised to know you,
grain of anguish in a bird’s heart.
I’ll be upon you, and every woman
everywhere will have a man on top of her.
Vertaald door Colin Carberry
Jaime Sabines (25 maart 1926 – 19 maart 1999)
“Ben jij een kúnstenaar?! Maar dat is tegenwoordig toch verboden?”
Peter Van Straaten (Arnhem, 25 maart 1935)
"This is the place, " Miss Moore say, presenting it to us in the voice she uses at the museum. "Let's look in the windows before we go in."
"Can we steal?" Sugar asks very serious like she's getting the ground rules squared away before she plays. "I beg your pardon," say Miss Moore, and we fall out. So she leads us around the windows of the toy store and me and Sugar screamin, "This is mine, that's mine, I gotta have that, that was made for me, I was born for that," till Big Butt drowns us out.
"Hey, I'm goin to buy that there."
"That there? You don't even know what it is, stupid."
"I do so," he say punchin on Rosie Giraffe. "It's a microscope."
"Whatcha gonna do with a microscope, fool?"
"Look at things."
"Like what, Ronald?" ask Miss Moore. And Big Butt ain't got the first notion. So here go Miss Moore gabbing about the thousands of bacteria in a drop of water and the somethinorother in a speck of blood and the million and one living things in the air around us is invisible to the naked eye. And what she say that for? Junebug go to town on that "naked" and we rolling. Then Miss Moore ask what it cost. So we all jam into the window smudgin it up and the price tag say $300. So then she ask how long'd take for Big Butt and Junebug to save up their allowances. "Too long," I say. "Yeh," adds Sugar, "outgrown it by that time." And Miss Moore say no, you never outgrow learning instruments. "Why, even medical students and interns and," blah, blah, blah. And we ready to choke Big Butt for bringing it up in the first damn place.”
Toni Cade Bambara (25 maart 1939 – 9 december 1995)
The Presbytery Has Lost None Of Its Charm …
The presbytery has lost none of its charm
Nor how a garden’s radiance can disarm,
Restoring hand to dog, and bridle to stallion:
But this explanation fails this mystery.
A plague on insight that cracks your talons,
The analysis that dispels your sense of alarm,
Wearing a preposterous cop’s cap for a perm,
Pointing out here the just and there the felon.
No explanation can redeem a mystery
I prefer the faded charms of the presbytery
And the sham radiance of a famous garden;
I prefer (it’s in my nature) the shuddery
Of fear obliterated by this tiny thief’s particularity
to blatancy and fame, like some lamp of Aladdin.
Vertaald door Laurence Petit en Ravi Shankar
Jacques Bens (25 maart 1931 – 26 juli 2001)