Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

J. Bernlef

Conservatory

The conservatory windows are wide open
inside someone is molesting age-old emotions
the grand piano moans and laments

In the park swallows skim the grass
harvesting air and insects

How to live? For what?
Big questions befitting small answers

As precise as these swallows who give
flitting double-quick

Someone inside suddenly stops playing
curses, closing his piano like a wing.

Conservatorium

Conservatorium

De ramen van het conservatorium staan wijdopen
daarbinnen vergrijpt iemand zich aan eeuwenoude gevoelens
de vleugel jammert en klaagt

In het park scheren zwaluwen het gras
oogsten lucht en insecten

Hoe te leven? Voor wat?
Grote wagen waarop kleine antwoorden passen

Zo precies als deze zwaluwen die geven
vliegensvlug

Iemand daarbinnen houdt plotseling op met spelen
vloekt en slaat zijn vleugel dicht.
Close

Conservatory

The conservatory windows are wide open
inside someone is molesting age-old emotions
the grand piano moans and laments

In the park swallows skim the grass
harvesting air and insects

How to live? For what?
Big questions befitting small answers

As precise as these swallows who give
flitting double-quick

Someone inside suddenly stops playing
curses, closing his piano like a wing.

Conservatory

The conservatory windows are wide open
inside someone is molesting age-old emotions
the grand piano moans and laments

In the park swallows skim the grass
harvesting air and insects

How to live? For what?
Big questions befitting small answers

As precise as these swallows who give
flitting double-quick

Someone inside suddenly stops playing
curses, closing his piano like a wing.
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