Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Paul Demets

It plunders us, lies supine

It plunders us, lies supine
smelling us out like a threat
and is jolted by its shadow, licks its poison, 
and tangled up in its blanket, moults, then nestles 

in our gaze and smells of apples, rattles
sounds and screeches a hole in the night, 
the depth of which we are mounted.
And looks at us. It turns into water

that has stood for too long in a glass
we can’t see through. We swallow it,
quench the nights, toast,     
heads ducked under. It sees how strangely 

good it tastes to drown.

Het rooft ons, verdooft ons, ligt plat

Het rooft ons, verdooft ons, ligt plat
op zijn buik ons als onraad te ruiken
en schrikt van zijn schaduw, likt zijn gif
en vervelt gevangen in zijn linnen, nestelt

zich in onze blik en ruikt naar appels, ratelt
klanken en krijst een kuil in de nacht
bijeen, die diepte waarin wij opzitten.
En het kijkt ons aan. Water wordt het

dat te lang in een glas heeft gestaan.
We doorzien het niet. We slikken het,
laven ons alle nachten, klinken,
kopje onder. Het ziet hoe vreemd

goed het ons smaakt om te verdrinken.
Close

It plunders us, lies supine

It plunders us, lies supine
smelling us out like a threat
and is jolted by its shadow, licks its poison, 
and tangled up in its blanket, moults, then nestles 

in our gaze and smells of apples, rattles
sounds and screeches a hole in the night, 
the depth of which we are mounted.
And looks at us. It turns into water

that has stood for too long in a glass
we can’t see through. We swallow it,
quench the nights, toast,     
heads ducked under. It sees how strangely 

good it tastes to drown.

It plunders us, lies supine

It plunders us, lies supine
smelling us out like a threat
and is jolted by its shadow, licks its poison, 
and tangled up in its blanket, moults, then nestles 

in our gaze and smells of apples, rattles
sounds and screeches a hole in the night, 
the depth of which we are mounted.
And looks at us. It turns into water

that has stood for too long in a glass
we can’t see through. We swallow it,
quench the nights, toast,     
heads ducked under. It sees how strangely 

good it tastes to drown.
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
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