Bart Chabot, T.S, Eliot, Cyprian Ekwensi

Dichter en schrijver Bart Chabot  werd geboren in Den Haag op 26 september 1954. Hij maakte zijn debuut met de poezie-bundel Als U Zo Gaat Beginnen in 1979. Hij is tevens de biograaf van Herman Brood. Broodje Gezond, een romantische biografie over mentor Herman Brood, belandt in 1996 in de Boeken Top Tien. Chabot is, naast zijn dichtwerkzaamheden ook regelmatig in het theater te zien, vroeger met Herman Brood, nu nog met Jules Deelder. Hij brengt tevens singles en cd’s uit en is vaste deelnemer aan het Groot Dictee der Nederlandse Taal. In 2005 schreef hij de tekst voor het Groot Kinderdictee en was hij tevens beste Nederlandse prominente deelnemer aan het Groot Dictee. In 2006 toert Chabot met Ronald Giphart en Martin Bril in de theatervoorstelling Giphart & Chabot met bril.



de lucht is klm-blauw
en het gras groeit aprilgroen op
daartussenin is van alles aan de hand
trouwens, achter die luchten
en onder het gras ook
maar naar wat er precies aan de gang was
bleef het gissen

er wordt aan de deur geklopt
een insider, kennelijk; de bel
doet het al jaren niet meer
maar als ik opendoe
staat er niemand
de stoep blijft de stoep
waarom doet mijn hoofd me dit aan?

het is kil in huis
de verwarming is kapot
en de zon is weliswaar op het appèl verschenen
maar als dienstplichtige
en biedt zo geen soelaas
hier in huis zelfs waait de wind
de kilte rukt tot in mijn botten op

ik kijk naar de vuilniszakken bij de stoeprand
dat doen de kraaien ook
zij vertrouwen het zaakje maar half
en komen er mooi hun boom niet voor uit
wat doe ik hier nog?
spookte het door mijn moerashoofd
mijn drijfzandkop
wat jaag ik na?

een dode hond?

een vlo?


Bart Chabot (Den Haag, 26 september 1954)


Thomas Stearns Eliot werd op 26 september 1888 geboren in St.Louis, Missouri als zoon van Henry Ware Eliot en Charlotte Champe Stearns. Zijn grootvader van vaders kant, William Greelleaf Eliot, was de oprichter van unitarianistische kerk in St. Louis. Na zijn middelbare school studeerde T.S.L. letteren en filosofie in Harvard. In 1914 verhuisde hij naar Londen en woonde enige tijd bijt Bertrand Russell en raakte bevriend met de Amerikaanse banneling Ezra Pound en de leden van de Bloomsbury Groep van Virginia Woolf, zonder ooit deel uit te maken van die groep. In de periode tussen 1917 en 1922 schreef Eliot zijn eerste grote werken: Prufrock and Other Observations (1917), Poems (1920) en The Waste Land (1922). The Waste Land, onder redactie van vriend en dichter-criticus Ezra Pound, kreeg onmiddellijk aandacht van de literaire kritiek en het publiek en vestigde Eliots reputatie als een belangrijk dichter. In 1948 ontving hij de Nobelprijs voor literatuur.


The Journey of the Magi

‘A cold coming we had of it,
Just the worst time of the year
For a journey, and such a long journey:
The ways deep and the weather sharp,
The very dead of winter.’
And the camels galled, sorefooted, refractory,
Lying down in the melting snow.
There were times we regretted
The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces,
And the silken girls bringing sherbet.
Then the camel men cursing and grumbling
and running away, and wanting their liquor and women,
And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters,
And the cities hostile and the towns unfriendly
And the villages dirty and charging high prices:
A hard time we had of it.
At the end we preferred to travel all night,
Sleeping in snatches,
With the voices singing in our ears, saying
That this was all folly.

Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley,
Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation;
With a running stream and a water-mill beating the darkness,
And three trees on the low sky,
And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow.
Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the
Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver,
And feet kiking the empty wine-skins.
But there was no information, and so we continued
And arriving at evening, not a moment too soon
Finding the place; it was (you might say) satisfactory.

All this was a long time ago, I remember,
And I would do it again, but set down
This set down
This: were we led all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly
We had evidence and no doubt. I had seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different; this Birth was
Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.



Thomas Stearns Eliot (26 september 1888 – 4 januari 1965)


Cyprian Ekwensi werd op 26 september 1921 in Nigeria geboren. Na zijn studie werkte hij eerst twee jaar als boswachter en onderwees daarna biologie en scheikunde. Tegelijkertijd schreef hij, ook voor de radio, talrijke korte verhalen. Aansluitend studeerde hij farmacie in Lagos en Londen, maar hij bleef actief voor de radio en de pers. Na een korte tijd als apotheker gewerkt te hebben werd Ekwensi redacteur bij de radio en in 1961 directeur op het Nigeriaanse ministerie voor informatie. Vanaf 1975 gaf hij leiding aan een uitgeverij van kranten totdat hij zich uiteindelijk geheel op het schrijven toelegde. Ekwensi schreef meer dan 30 romans.

Werk o..a.: King for ever! (1992), Divided we stand (1980), Survive the peace (1976)

Uit:  No Escape From S. A. P

“If anyone had told Dr Fasanmi of Nigeria that he would be running a Centre in Kuwait in the middle of the Gulf Crisis, he would never have believed it.

“Kuwait? .. You must be joking! Am quite happy here in Lagos, thank you!”

But that was before SAP started biting.

Dr Fasanmi was a low-profile kind of man. He had little time for social life, or for gossip. Though a member of several clubs, he was seldom seen killing time.

When at the club he was either playing a brisk game of tennis or swimming, and then, he would gather his kit, fling them into his official car and speed off to the General Hospital where he worked as consultant.

Late at night, he would go home to his wife, Funmi a pretty accountant with a commercial bank, who had given him two lovely kids — a boy and a girl.

Fasanmi and his wife had dreams but there was little time to take them seriously.

He had left the club one afternoon and was about to start his car when the radio said, “Here is a special announcement: The following medical doctors in the Health Service have been retired from the service — with immediate effect …

He did not stop to listen as the names were reeled off. He was comparatively young, had committed no crime, had not contravened the civil serv
ice codes of conduct …

He drove on. Suddenly, he pricked up his ears. Was that, name his own or someone else’s? He could not be sure…

Retired–by a simple radio announcement. Such was the terrifying practice under which one worked these days.

Retired… A cold sweat broke over him and he found himself driving faster towards his home. His wife confirmed that she had heard the announcement.

Fasanmi put on a smile. “Well,” he consoled himself. Such are the times in which we live! Appointments and dismissals by radio broadcast.

But the shock of it all remained, and for weeks and weeks he was disoriented. At 45, he was retired from the Public Service. This meant he had to vacate his official quarters, return the government vehicle assigned to him as consultant to the General Hospital, find a new employer or, better still, set up on his own, but where was the capital?

He would be paid a lump sum as gratuity and a pittance of a pension monthly, scarcely enough to set up a practice. He had to do something to get himself together.

The more he thought about his plight, the more confused he became. Occasionaly, sitting by himself, he would burst into fits of self-derisive laughter.

It took him another few months to set up the Family Health Clinic and that was because he was a special kind of man, a survivor. Many professionals of his kind had been destroyed by sudden and unexpected retirement.

Finally , there it was: The Family Health Clinic with its complement of well-turned out staff — doctors, nurses, medical technicians, located in a side-street in Lagos. The meticulous service, reasonable charges and reliable diagnoses and prescriptions soon gave it a good reputation.

Patronage soared. Returns were impressive. He realized he should have established on his own all this lost time. Now he could give expression to his dreams.”


Cyprian Ekwensi (Nigeria, 26 september 1921)