Naomi Shihab Nye, Dave Eggers, Jack Kerouac, Carl Hiaasen, Edward Albee

De Amerikaanse dichteres en schrijfster Naomi Shihab Nye werd geboren op 12 maart 1952 in St. Louis, Missouri. Zie ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2009 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2010.


If you place a fern
under a stone
the next day it will be
nearly invisible
as if the stone has
swallowed it.

If you tuck the name of a loved one
under your tongue too long
without speaking it
it becomes blood
the little sucked-in breath of air
hiding everywhere
beneath your words.

No one sees
the fuel that feeds you.


Making a Fist 

For the first time, on the road north of Tampico,
I felt the life sliding out of me,
a drum in the desert, harder and harder to hear.
I was seven, I lay in the car
watching palm trees swirl a sickening pattern past the glass.
My stomach was a melon split wide inside my skin.

“How do you know if you are going to die?”
I begged my mother.
We had been traveling for days.
With strange confidence she answered,
“When you can no longer make a fist.”

Years later I smile to think of that journey,
the borders we must cross separately,
stamped with our unanswerable woes.
I who did not die, who am still living,
still lying in the backseat behind all my questions,
clenching and opening one small hand.


Naomi Shihab Nye (St. Louis,12 maart 1952)



De Amerikaanse schrijver Dave Eggers werd geboren op 12 maart 1970 in Chicago. Zie ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2007 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2008 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2009 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2010.


Uit: Zeitoun


On moonless nights the men and boys of Jableh, a dusty fishing town on the coast of Syria, would gather their lanterns and set out in their quiet est boats. Five or six small craft, two or three fishermen in each. A mile out, they would arrange the boats in a circle on the black sea, drop their nets, and, holding their lanterns over the water, they would approximate the moon.

The fish, sardines, would begin gathering soon after, a slow mass of silver rising from below. The fish were attracted to plankton, and the plankton were attracted to the light. They would begin to circle, a chain linked loosely, and over the next hour their numbers would grow. The black gaps between silver links would close until the fishermen could see, below, a solid mass of silver spinning.

Abdulrahman Zeitoun was only thirteen when he began fishing for sardines this way, a method called lampara, borrowed from the Italians. He had waited years to join the men and teenagers on the night boats, and he’d spent those years asking questions. Why only on moonless nights? Because, his brother Ahmad said, on moon-filled nights the plankton would be visible everywhere, spread out all over the sea, and the sardines could see and eat the glowing organisms with ease. But without a moon the men could make their own, and could bring the sardines to the surface in stunning concentrations. You have to see it, Ahmad told his little brother. You’ve never seen anything like this.“



Dave Eggers (Chicago, 12 maart 1970)




De Amerikaanse schrijver Jack Kerouac werd geboren op 12 maart 1922 in Lowell, in de Amerikaanse staat Massachusetts. Zie ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2007 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2008 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2009 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2010. 


Uit: On The Road


„I’d been poring over maps of the United States in Paterson for months, even reading books about the pioneers and savoring names like Platte and Cimarron and so on, and on the road-map was one long red line called Route 6 that led from the tip of Cape Cod clear to Ely, Nevada, and there dipped down to Los Angeles. I’ll just stay on all the way to Ely, I said to myself and confidently started. To get to 6 I had to go up to Bear Mountain. Filled with dreams of what I’d do in Chicago, in Denver, and then finally in San Fran, I took the Seventh Avenue Subway to the end of the line at 242nd Street, and there took a trolley into Yonkers; in downtown Yonkers I transferred to an outgoing trolley and went to the city limits on the east bank of the Hudson River. If you drop a rose in the Hudson River at its mysterious source in the Adirondacks, think of all the places it journeys as it goes to sea forever — think of that wonderful Hudson Valley. I started hitching up the thing. Five scattered rides took me to the desired Bear Mountain Bridge, where Route 6 arched in from New England. It began to rain in torrents when I was let off there. It was mountainous. Route 6 came over the river, wound around a traffic circle, and disappeared into the wilderness. Not only was there no traffic but the rain come down in buckets and I had no shelter. I had to run under some pines to take cover; this did no good; I began crying and swearing and socking myself on the head for being such a damn fool. I was forty miles north of New York; all the way up I’d been worried about the fact that on this, my big opening day, I was only moving north instead of the so-longed for west. Now I was stuck on my northermost hangup. I ran a quarter-mile to an abandoned cute English-style filling station and stood under the dripping eaves. High up over my head the great hairy Bear Mountain sent down thunderclaps that put the fear of God in me. All I could see were smoky trees and dismal wilderness rising to the skies. “What the hell am I doing up here?” I cursed, I cried for Chicago. “Even now they’re all having a big time, they’re doing this, I’m not there, when will I get there!” — and so on.“


Jack Kerouac (12 maart 1922 – 21 oktober 1969)




De Amerikaanse schrijver, journalist en columnist Carl Hiaasen werd geboren op 12 maart 1953 in Plantation, Florida (nabij Fort Lauderdale) en is van Noorse afkomst. Hiaasen studeerde aan de Universiteit van Emory, waar hij vaak schreef voor de schoolkrant, The Emory Wheel. In 1972 ging hij naar de Universiteit van Florida, waar hij schreef voor The Independent Florida Alligator. In 1974 studeerde hij opnieuw af, met een attest journalistiek.  Hiaasen werkte als journalist voor Cocoa Today. Sinds 1976 werkte hij vervolgens voor de Miami Herald, waar hij tot op de dag van vandaag is gebleven. In 1979 stapte hij over op onderzoekende journalistiek. In 1985 begon hij ook met het schrijven van columns, drie keer per week, maar na het succes van zijn romans werd dat teruggebracht tot één maal per week. Zijn eerste drie boeken waren samen geschreven met Bill Montalbano, ook journalist: Powder Burn (1981), Trap Line (1981), en A Death in China (1986). In 1986 schreef Hiaasen zijn eerste soloboek genaamd Tourist Season. Hiaasen werkte verschillende jaren samen met Britse theaters voor de verfilming van zijn bestsellerboek „Lucky You“. Dat resulteerde in een stuk met muziek van Loudon Wainwright III. Het verscheen in 2008.


Uit: Lucky You


„And at 30 JoLayne dumped Lawrence, a lawyer, her one and only husband. Lawrence had been notified of his disbarment exactly one week after he and JoLayne were married, but she stuck with him for almost a year. JoLayne was fond of Lawrence and wanted to believe his earnest denials regarding the multiple fraud convictions that precipitated his trouble with the Florida Bar. While appealing his case, Lawrence took a job as a toll taker on the Beeline Expressway, a plucky career realignment that nearly won JoLayne’s heart. Then one night he was caught making off with a thirty-pound sack of loose change, mostly quarters and dimes. Before he could post bail, JoLayne packed up most of his belongings, including his expensive Hermes neckties, and gave them to the Salvation Army. Then she filed for divorce.
Five years later she was still single and unattached when, to her vast amusement, she won the Florida Lotto. She happened to be sitting with a plate of turkey leftovers in front of the television at 11 p.m., when the winning numbers were announced.
JoLayne Lucks didn’t faint, shriek or dance wildly around the house. She smiled, though, thinking of the six discarded men from her past life; thinking how, in spite of themselves, they’d finally amounted to something. Twenty-eight million dollars, to be precise.
One hour earlier and almost three hundred miles away, a candy-red Dodge Ram pulled into a convenience store in Florida City. Two men got out of the truck: Bodean Gazzer, known locally as Bode, and his companion Chub, who claimed to have no last name. Although they parked in a handicapped-only zone, neither man was physically disabled in any way.
Bode Gazzer was five feet six and had never forgiven his parents for it. He wore three-inch snakeskin shitkickers and walked with a swagger that suggested not brawn so much as hemorrhoidal tribulation. Chub was a beer-gutted six two, moist-eyed, ponytailed and unshaven. He carried a loaded gun at all times and was Bode Gazzer’s best and only friend.“



Carl Hiaasen (Plantation, 12 maart 1953)




De Amerikaanse schrijver Edward Albee werd geboren op 12 maart 1928 in Washington DC. Zie ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2007 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2008 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2009 en ook mijn blog van 12 maart 2010

Uit: Wer hat Angst vor Virginia Woolf (Vertaald door Alissa en Martin Walser)



Spaß und Spiele

Auf der Bühne ist es dunkel. Ein Schlag gegen die Haustür.

Man hört Martha lachen. Die Haustür geht auf, die Lichter

werden eingeschaltet. Martha kommt herein, hinter ihr George.

MARTHA: Gott oh Gott…

GEORGE: …Schhhhhh…

MARTHA: …Du lieber Himmel…

GEORGE: Um Gottes Willen, Martha, wir haben zwei Uhr mor..

MARTHA: Ach, George!

GEOEGE: Tut mir leid, aber…

MARTHA: So eine Flasche! Du bist eine richtige Flasche.

GEORGE: Es ist spät, verstehst du? Spät.

MARTHA: (schaut im Zimmer umher. Imitiert Bette Davis) Was für ein

tristes Loch. He, aus was ist das? „Was für ein tristes Loch!“

GEORGE: Wie soll ich wissen, aus was…

MARTHA: Ach komm! Aus was ist das? Du weißt es…

GEORGE: …Martha…


GEORGE: (verdrossen) Aus was ist was?

MARTHA: Hab ich dir doch gerade gesagt; gerade eben. „Was für ein

tristes Loch!“ Hm? Aus was ist das?

GEORGE: Ich habe keine Ahnung woher…

MARTHA: Doofe Nuss! Aus irgendso’nem saublöden Bette-Davis-Film…

so’nem saublöden Hollywood-Schinken…

GEORGE: Ich kann mich nicht an alle Filme erinnern, die…

MARTHA: Keiner verlangt, daß du dich an jeden einzelnen Hollywood-

Schinken erinnern sollst…bloß an einen! Einen einzigen

kleinen Schinken! Bette Davis kriegt am Schluß

Bauchfellentzündung…während des ganzen Films trägt sie

diese riesige schwarze, scheußliche Perücke und kriegt


Bauchfellentzündung, und sie ist verheiratet mit Joseph

Cotten oder was…“



Edward Albee (Washington DC, 12 maart 1928)

 Melinda Dillon en Arthur Hill in de originele Broadway productie, 1962


Zie voor nog meer schrijvers van de 12e maart ook mijn vorige blog van vandaag en eveneens mijn eerste blog van vandaag.