Organizing Dialogue, Experience and Knowledge for Complex Problem-Solving

Paul Gellings presents Verbrande schepen

by • November 4th, 2011

 Paul Gelling reading from his novel Verbrande schepen published by Uitgeverij Passage on Thor, the culture boat in Zwolle. An intriguing errancy, a search for a love lost, and absolution maybe, to be sure of that , I will have to read the book fi…

Read More

Leave a Comment

For Susan Birkeland’s friends

by • July 1st, 2011

Waiting for the voices
which will bring her
words new life
Hibbing & Mercy
and stone-hard
and some of my stone-hearted issues
love as noun
love as verb
love as stillness
the stars too far
to hear their
coal hard song
their cosmic hum
so I wait for
the voices
bringing life & melody
to her stardust words
for Susan Birkeland’s friends who lovingly, splendidly read her poetry at the recording studio Paradiso
Read More

Leave a Comment

2nd European Festival of Poetry, 2011

by • May 2nd, 2011

Note the 17th of September in your diaries: That is the day you can come to the Permeke library in Antwerp to enjoy the poets, performers, musicians and singers. The program is coming together nicely. The performances are finding their level, how to show and let hear what we want to communicate. Poets from five countries will be present. Some poets you might have met and heard last year and that would be an occasion to get reacquainted with them and some are first timers and not of the least.  We’ll be honoring a few Grandes Dames of poetry who turn 70 and 75 this year. 7 of the poets come from outside of Belgium: 3 from The Netherlands, 2 from Germany, 1 from France and one from the US. Although work of more than one American poet will be read  and performed.
So note the date: September 17, 8 PM.

As an appetizer a short poem by Sherman Alexie from one of the main features of the festival:The sounds of harbour, the upcoming third volume in this series: Harbors of the West.

Migration, 1902
The salmon swim
so thick in this river
that Grandmother walks
across the water
on the bridge
of their spines.
Migratie, 1902

De zalm zwemt zo
dicht op elkaar in deze rivier

dat Grootmoeder over
het water loopt

op de brug
van hun rug.


With permission of Hanging Loose Press

Read More

Leave a Comment

Lucienne Stassaert’s poetic answer

by • April 8th, 2011

© sms:foto duisburg/rhein 2011
 Lucienne waiting and listening with full attention? and a bit tense, but happy.

The following poem is a declaration of love to her city and the river that flows through it. English translation will follow one of these days.
Een laken van water
bij de monding van de stad:
zo blijft de Schelde
Achter in mijn geheugen.
Nu en dan donkert het licht
in alle dingen
Op de rand van herinnering.
Zo effen, een wolk in een spiegel,
is het zicht op mijn verleden.
Regen wijst er de schade aan
en stilte, voorgoed ophanden,
groeit als klimop
Naar een uitzinnig zwijgen.
Ik kom er bij tussenpozen
aanstonds tot mezelf.
Read More

Leave a Comment

Town hall reception for Lucienne Stassaert

by • April 6th, 2011

In the stately town hall of Antwerp Lucienne Stassaert was officially received to be honored as one of the recognized Belgian poets writing in Dutch. In absence of the person responsible for culture in Antwerp, Miss Leen van Dijck was a more than wordy replacement, with personal words of recognition and warmth she honored this grande dame of poetry.

Lucienne answered with a a brief speech and a poem which under pinned her belonging to this city: De Scheldt, the river that flows through this town and shapes its citizens.
Add caption
Friends came to talk and honor Lucienne, looking at some books after signing the GoldenBook of the city of Antwerp

In  this picture a good time is had by all…
Many thanks to Henri Floris Jespers, long time friend of Lucienne and as she called him: the benchmark for quality in poetry in Flandres.
Pictures : Fred Schywek

© sms:foto duisburg/rhein 2011

Read More

Leave a Comment

About death and living again

by • February 20th, 2011

The poet Bart Stouten in the shade and applauding hands in the foreground…
The applause was well earned for the new book’ Tussen Dood en Herleven’.
Two of the keynote speakers  could not be present. Luckily Bart, cool as ever,  just told  about the 4 parts of the book. The inspiration was the close friendship with the MUHKA-curator Jan Foncé who has passed away. The presentation was organized in the museum café where Floris De Rycker played baroque music on the lute. Friends, admirers and lovers of art and literature gathered for the ocasion.

Even the books arrived on time.

And then he read some poetry…  Well you just will have to get the book.
Thanks for a wonderful and warm afternoon and  beautiful poetry.

Ok, Tomorrow I’ll post the last poem he read but in its English translation…

Read More

Leave a Comment

In one breath

by • January 27th, 2011

Today Poetry day in Holland and Belgium, The book In einem Atemzug, In een adem, In one breath, wib, 2011, will be presented  during the eight honorable poetesses who will read to night in the old city center of Antwerp in the literary Café den Hopsack.

She will open with the cycle Life, accompanied  by Jean Demey. Both have worked together often with wonderful results.

It doesn’t let go of you     
even if sometimes
without a leash hoping for the best
you let it run away –
It attacks you
even if it wears
a constant muzzle:
a precaution
taken in a moment
when the clock declines
to regulate
the traffic of time –
It throws sand in your eyes
as foam on your lips
it stays behind
so that, in order to speak one word,
your anger first
has to be laid out
like a corpse
not yet decomposing
but inclined
to do so
without further notice
but the teeth-grinding
of light
on the threshold
of high shadow
wanting to devour everything –
Read More

Leave a Comment


by • December 28th, 2010

STASSAERT BETWEEN THE YEARS is tonight’s reading by Lucienne Stassaert from what her new volume of poetry will be. It is a comprehensive overview of her work, with a poem from each period of her writing. Those who never have heard her read, have missed something. With remarkable strength and honesty she directly speaks to her listeners. This is the last activity for Ruhr2010, European Capital of Culture. What remains are the books  that are produced within this framework.

The following poem gave the title to the book which will be presented January 27, GEDICHTENDAG in den Hopsack, Antwerp

In één adem
Vier de lente, de liefde niet.
Verzoen mijn lippen, groei mij aan
als de lente vergeefs wordt en bitterder.
Weer koesteren bomen landhonger,
drijven vogels de winter uit
de baaierd van april.
Ook dit zout, oud zeer, kennen we.
En zoals minnaars en vleermuizen blindvliegen,
geven dromen zich zelden bloot.
Met dit vermoeden leefden we;
het vuur aan de schubben, de schuimlippen.
Ooftbomen gloeien wit.
Wij sterven langzamer af –
droesemig, meestal achter glas.

Of zoals bloesem, in één nacht. 


In einem Atemzug
Fei’re den Frühling, die Liebe nicht
Entküss’ meine Lippen, verwachse mit mir
wenn das Frühjahr vergebens und bitter
Wieder … Bäume mit Hunger nach Land
treiben Vögel den Winter heraus
das Durcheinander des April’
Auch diese salzig’, alte Seelennarbe kennen wir
Und wie Liebende und Fledermäuse in Blindheit fliegen
Geben Träume sich selten nackt.
Mit diesen Ahnungen lebten wir,
das Feuer an den Schuppen, die Schaumlippen
Obstbäume verglühen zu Weiß.
Wir sterben langsamer ab –
Heruntergeflockt und abgesetzt, meist hinter Glas

Oder als Blüten während einer Nacht. 

In one breath

Celebrate spring, not love
appease my lips, grow on me
when spring turns in vain and more bitter.   
Once more trees cherish hunger for land,
drive birds out of winter
the hustle bustle of April.
Also this salt, this old pain, we know.
And like lovers and bats blindly fly,
dreams seldom bare themselves.    
With these inklings we lived;
fire at the fins, the frothy lips.
Fruit trees glow white.
We slowly decline –
dregs of wine, usually behind glass.
Or like the blossom, in one night.
Read More

Leave a Comment