18-02-18

Nick McDonell, Robbert Welagen, Bart FM Droog, Maarten Mourik, Huub Beurskens, Gaston Burssens, Toni Morrison, Elke Erb, Charlotte Van den Broeck, J. C. Bloem, Clara Eggink

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver Nick McDonell werd geboren op 18 februari 1984 in New York. Zie ook alle tags voor Nick McDonell op dit blog.

Uit: The Third Brother

“When dinner started, the children would go to the playroom and eat with the nannies. They lounged on heavy couches, watching movies until they fell asleep and the nannies went outside for cigarettes. Lyle especially loved these dinners and made a point of talking to everybody, lingering in the dining room rather than watching movies with the other children. He loved listening to adults talk. So did Mike, but he knew he didn't understand the way his older brother did. The adults sat and drank wine and laughed and smiled at one another in the fall candlelight. Many of them had started families late or had been married once before and had only recently started new ones. Jobs were interesting; there was much travel. There was a lot to talk about, and the subtext was that they were lucky to have the lives they had. Mike remembered everyone being very happy.
Before one of these dinners, Lyle decided that he and Mike would be spies. Lyle had gotten a small tape recorder, only a toy really, for his birthday earlier that fall. Their plan was to hide it in the dining room to record the dinner conversation. While the servants were setting up, and Mike's mother was upstairs dressing, and Mike's father was out walking along the ocean, Lyle and Mike secured the tape recorder under the table with duct tape. As the guests arrived and had drinks, the boys slid between them and crawled under the table and switched on the recorder. They were very excited all through dinner, but they didn't tell any of the other children what they were up to. By dessert, Mike couldn't wait any longer. He wanted to go get the recorder. No, said Lyle, they'll be there for a long time. Let's just look. When they peeked around the dining room door, Elliot Analect saw them and held up the tape recorder, which he must have found much earlier, maybe when he first sat down. Analect wasn't a regular guest at these dinners. He was usually abroad somewhere. At this point he was a correspondent in East Asia, and Mike's father was especially glad to have him for Thanksgiving. Mike's mother didn't like Analect. Mike didn't know this the way Lyle did, but he had a sense of it too. When Analect held up the recorder Mike knew instantly they would be in trouble. He saw the way the adults laughed but didn't think it was funny. One of them, drunker than the rest and not a very good friend of Mike's parents, was even a little angry. Mike remembered that he worked for one of the networks. Their mother was embarrassed and that always made her cross as well. Mike's father called the boys over and tried to set things right by giving them a talk in front of the table that was both funny and serious. Analect removed the tape from the recorder and put it in his pocket.”

 
Nick McDonell (New York, 18 februari 1984)

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18-02-17

Nick McDonell, Robbert Welagen, Bart FM Droog, Maarten Mourik, Huub Beurskens, Gaston Burssens, Toni Morrison, Elke Erb, Charlotte Van den Broeck

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver Nick McDonell werd geboren op 18 februari 1984 in New York. Zie ook alle tags voor Nick McDonell op dit blog.

Uit: The Third Brother

“Mike tries to decode this and can't. Analect tells him again to stay out of trouble and that Bishop will take care of him. It seems to Mike that Bishop is pleased to have the help, but that there is more to it. When they are leaving the office, Analect tells Mike to wait for a moment, and when they are alone, he tells Mike that Dorr had been a friend of Mike's father, years ago. That they had all been good friends, actually, the three of them practically brothers, and that Mike's father would be glad for news of Dorr.
Mike looks out the window. He notices for the first time how really extraordinary the view from Analect's office is. Mike can see the whole city, enormous and smogged and throbbing. For a moment he can't believe the sound of it doesn't blow in the windows. But Analect's office sits quietly above it all, humming coolly. Mike is suddenly uneasy, with only the inch of glass between the two of them and the loud, empty space above the city. He looks back at Analect, who is frowning.
"Dorr and your father were sparring partners, when they boxed back in college," says Analect.
Mike looks back out over the city. He knew about the boxing, but his father had never mentioned Dorr. It all surprises him, but maybe it's just seeing his own features reflected in the glass, and the long drop to Hong Kong from fifty stories up.
When Mike was a small boy, his parents often entertained. In New York City in their world, they were famous for the dinners they gave in their big beach house at the end of Long Island, especially Thanksgiving. Mike remembered the candlelight and gluey cranberry sauce, which he would wipe off his hands into his hair. His older brother, Lyle, remembered the same things. There were servants, who disciplined Mike when his parents did not. One Filipino lady in particular boxed his ears. When he was older he remembered how it hurt but not her name. Their parents gave these dinners several years in a row. There were mostly the same guests, adults who would tousle Mike's fine but cranberried hair, and their children, a crew of beautiful, spoiled playmates whom Mike assumed he would know forever. He still saw some of them, at parties and dinners of their own on school breaks. At hearing that one or two of them had slid into addiction, Mike would remember chasing them through his mother's busy kitchen. His mother was never in the kitchen, of course, but it was definitely hers. Small paintings of vegetables and an antique mirror hung on its walls.”

 

 
Nick McDonell (New York, 18 februari 1984)

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18-02-16

Nick McDonell, Robbert Welagen, Bart FM Droog, Maarten Mourik, Huub Beurskens, Gaston Burssens, Charlotte Van den Broeck

 

De Amerikaanse schrijver Nick McDonell werd geboren op 18 februari 1984 in New York. Zie ook alle tags voor Nick McDonell op dit blog.

Uit: The End of Major Combat Operations

“Ricky was an interpreter who chain-smoked and always carried several packs of cigarettes. He was generous with his smokes, would shake one out for you each time you reached for your pack. His hands shook when he offered you one, though; Ricky seemed sometimes like he wanted something back. The guys he rode with liked him. He was a source of fun because of his nerves, but he played along with the jokes.
The strangest thing about Ricky was the way he perspired. The guys in the truck agreed that they had never seen anything like it. Ricky dripped. His hair was always damp. When he turned his head quickly, the saltwater sprayed off him. The canvas of his seat in the MRAP was always stained.
Ricky, like most terps, rotated between his company’s platoons, but recently everyone in the 1-12’s Bull company had been seeing more of him than usual. He had moved onto the FOB full time. In fact, he was living on a cot outside one of the lieutenant’s rooms. This particular LT, Drew Masone, was a broad twenty-three-year-old from Levittown, Long Island, distinguished most clearly by his tolerant nature. He only shook his head about Ricky, didn’t say that he was stinking up the hallway even though he was, lying on his cot in his undershirt whenever he wasn’t standing outside, smoking, saying hello too many times.
Most terps went home every couple of weeks. There was, sometimes, joking between them and the soldiers about how the terps could go home and get laid and have a beer up in Kurdistan. The platoons rotated the fortnightly “terp drop,” a boring and simple mission. The terps left their camo behind and piled into the back of the MRAP, often with a small refrigerator or television set or bag of clothes that they had procured in the previous two weeks of patrols. Then the patrol mounted up and drove north to a deserted stretch of road in Kurdistan where a couple of beat-up sedans idled. The terps would quickly dismount and load their stuff into the sedans and speed off down the road. Terp drop was easy and tedious for the GIs, but for the terps it was more important than almost anything else. It was transit between worlds. What if the wrong person saw them? What if they were followed? What if they brought the mayhem and killing back home?”

 

 
Nick McDonell (New York, 18 februari 1984)

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18-02-15

Charlotte Van den Broeck

 

Onafhankelijk van geboortedata

De Vlaamse dichteres Charlotte Van den Broeck werd in 1991 geboren in Borgerhout. Ze studeert woordkunst aan het Conservatorium van Antwerpen. Van den Broeck stond in 2013 in de top honderd van de Turing Gedichtenwedstrijd en won een plek in de finale van DichtSlamRap. In 2015 verscheen bij De Arbeiderspers haar debuut Kameleon met beeldende, verhalende gedichten dat als een van de beste debuutbundels van het jaar werd betiteld.

 

Kameleon

Ik spreek in een slepende melodielijn van ‘hier’ en ‘nu’ en ‘blijf’
herhaal dit zo vaak tot het schuurt
tot je me terug in je mond rolt, me onuitgesproken
op je deinende tong legt, zachtjes
zoals kleine meisjes met overgewicht zachtjes
stuiteren bij het lopen.
En ik wil dat je me opnieuw zegt, dat je niet kan ophouden mij te zeggen
dat ik uit de holte van je mond breek
en je me nieuwe namen geeft, de verkeerde
zoals ‘lief’ en ‘klein’ en ‘traag’
dat ik me daarnaar ga gedragen als een geconditioneerde hond,
voortaan mijn borsten bedek
als je onverwachts de badkamer binnenkomt.
Laten we ergens tussen tong en tanden
analoge liefde in dit hoofdkussen liegen.
Misschien schieten we elkaar alsnog te binnen.
Misschien herinneren we ons de plek
waar het schudden begon
en we het ritme niet meer vonden.

 

 
Charlotte Van den Broeck (Borgerhout, 1991)

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