Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Cees Nooteboom

Bashõ II

We know the cheap perils of poetic poetry
And of moonstruck singing. It is embalmed air,
Unless you make stones of it that glitter and give pain.
You, old master, cut the stones
With which you can kill a thrush.
You carved from the world an image that bears your name.
Seventeen stones like arrows a school of silenced singers.
See by the water a trace of the poet
On his way to the inmost snow country. See how the water erases it
How the man with the hat reinscribes it
Saving water and footstep, always arresting lost motion,
So that what vanished remains as something that vanished.

Bashõ II

Bashõ II

Wij kennen de poëtische poëzie de gemene gevaren
Van maanziek en zangstem. Gebalsemde lucht is het,
Tenzij je er stenen van maakt die glanzen en pijn doen.
Jij, oude meester, sleep de stenen
Waar je een lijster mee dood gooit.
Jij sneed uit de wereld een beeld dat je naam draagt.
Zeventien stenen als pijlen een school doodse zangers.
Zie bij het water het spoor van de dichter
Op weg naar het binnenste sneeuwland. Zie hoe het water het uitwist
Hoe de man met de hoed het weer opschrijft
En water en voetstap bewaart, de vergane beweging steeds stilzet,
Zodat wat verdween er nog is als iets dat verdween.
Close

Bashõ II

We know the cheap perils of poetic poetry
And of moonstruck singing. It is embalmed air,
Unless you make stones of it that glitter and give pain.
You, old master, cut the stones
With which you can kill a thrush.
You carved from the world an image that bears your name.
Seventeen stones like arrows a school of silenced singers.
See by the water a trace of the poet
On his way to the inmost snow country. See how the water erases it
How the man with the hat reinscribes it
Saving water and footstep, always arresting lost motion,
So that what vanished remains as something that vanished.

Bashõ II

We know the cheap perils of poetic poetry
And of moonstruck singing. It is embalmed air,
Unless you make stones of it that glitter and give pain.
You, old master, cut the stones
With which you can kill a thrush.
You carved from the world an image that bears your name.
Seventeen stones like arrows a school of silenced singers.
See by the water a trace of the poet
On his way to the inmost snow country. See how the water erases it
How the man with the hat reinscribes it
Saving water and footstep, always arresting lost motion,
So that what vanished remains as something that vanished.
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
Partners
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère