Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Geert van Istendael

Lullaby for the Sleepless

Can you see the chimney-pots on the roofs, at night?
They hang by threads, which you can’t see.
The stars you know, you think, so far, up there,
those are the holes from which threads hang
and heavy houses are lowered down,
cautiously lowered till they rest
upon the injuries of the earth.
Inside the houses, rooms are full of balm,
of dark-blue sleep
that glides along the threads into the chimneys
and covers, listens, comforts
as only a roof gives comfort.

Berceuse voor slapelozen

Berceuse voor slapelozen

Zie je de schoorsteenpijpen op de daken, \'s nachts?
Aan draden hangen ze, die zie je niet.
De sterren ken je, denk je, ver, daar boven,
het zijn de gaten waaruit draden hangen
en zware huizen worden neergelaten,
behoedzaam neergelaten tot ze rusten
op de kwetsuren van de aarde.
Vol balsem hangt de binnenkant van huizen,
vol donkerblauwe slaap
die langs de draden in de schoorsteen glijdt
en toedekt, luistert, troost
zoals een dak kan troosten.
Close

Lullaby for the Sleepless

Can you see the chimney-pots on the roofs, at night?
They hang by threads, which you can’t see.
The stars you know, you think, so far, up there,
those are the holes from which threads hang
and heavy houses are lowered down,
cautiously lowered till they rest
upon the injuries of the earth.
Inside the houses, rooms are full of balm,
of dark-blue sleep
that glides along the threads into the chimneys
and covers, listens, comforts
as only a roof gives comfort.

Lullaby for the Sleepless

Can you see the chimney-pots on the roofs, at night?
They hang by threads, which you can’t see.
The stars you know, you think, so far, up there,
those are the holes from which threads hang
and heavy houses are lowered down,
cautiously lowered till they rest
upon the injuries of the earth.
Inside the houses, rooms are full of balm,
of dark-blue sleep
that glides along the threads into the chimneys
and covers, listens, comforts
as only a roof gives comfort.
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
Partners
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère