High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands


High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands

Myrte Leffring: Another Day
© Rosa van Ederen
© Rosa van Ederen © Rosa van Ederen
Friday Verses

Myrte Leffring: Another Day

This week's Friday Verses are written by Myrte Leffring. We translated Zo’n dag (Another Day). This poem first appeared in Dutch in Het Liegend Konijn, a magazine for contemporary Dutch-language poetry.

Myrte Leffring (Nieuwegein, b. 1973) is a poet, literature teacher and owner of the copywriting agency Wolken van krijt (Clouds of chalk). Her poetic debut Om je schouders hang ik de nachten (I Hang the Nights Round Your Shoulders) was published by Van Gennep in 2015, and was followed by De tere bloemen van het verstand (The Tender Flowers of the Mind, 2016). She is editor-in-chief of the poetry magazine Awater, organiser of the Poetry Competition and poetry programmer for various literary festivals.

Another Day

Pleasure bids us rest. An instinctive
desire: it is the art of maintaining calm,
of silencing thirst, speaking severely to it
like a parent to its unmanageable child.
The food awaits, the wine lures me into the evening with its drunken tongue.

The urge mounts, we sneak looks at the other, approach each other.
We join battle, knowing all along which of us will win.
Distance creeps shiftily from between us.
Two metres. Something pants in me.
A thumping longing seizes my breastbone.

The pressure mounts, forces a fire into my temples
which makes my useless head snap.
One metre. I reach and reach, shrink back half-heartedly. There is
no escape. Who speaks in me, so loud and out of tune?
Who spurs me on to this endless drinking den?

But then: a second bottle. The dry cork. I who whirl and hurl
of my behaviour, the black that dances messily before my eyes.
And oh, tomorrow another day like this will start.

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