Jane Smiley, Vladimir Vojnovitsj, Cyprian Ekwensi, Peter Turrini, Joseph Furphy, Edwin Keppel Bennett

De Amerikaanse schrijfster Jane Smiley werd geboren op 26 september 1949 in Los Angeles. Zie ook alle tags voor Jane Smiley op dit blog en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2010

Uit: A Thousand Acres

“Acreage and financing were facts as basic as the name and gender in Zebulon County. Harold Clark and my father used to argue at our kitchen table about who should get the Ericson land when they finally lost their mortgage. I was aware of this whenever I played with Ruthie Ericson, whenever my mother, my sister Rose, and I went over to help can garden produce, whenever Mrs. Ericson brought over some pies or doughnuts, whenever my father loaned Mr. Ericson a tool, whenever we ate Sunday dinner in the Ericson’s kitchen. I recognized the justice of Harold Clark’s opinion that the Ericson’ land was on his side of the road, but even so, I thought it should be us. For one thing, Dinah Ericson’s bedroom had a window seat in the closet that I coveted. For another, I thought it appropriate and desirable that the great circle of the flat earth spreading out from the T intersection of County Road 686 and Cabot Street be ours. A thousand acres. It was that simple.
It was 1951 and I was eight when I saw the farm and the future in this way. That was the year my father bought his first car, a Buick sedan with prickly gray velvet seats, so rounded and slick that it was easy to slide off the backseat into the footwell when we went over a stiff bump or around a sharp corner. That was also the year my sister Caroline was born, which was undoubtedly the reason my father bought the car. The Ericson Children and the Clark children continued to ride in the back of the farm pickup, but the Cook children kicked their toes against a front seat and stared out the back windows, nicely protected from the dust.
The car was the exact measure of six hundred forty acres compared to three hundred or five hundred. »

Jane Smiley (Los Angeles, 26 september 1949)

Lees verder “Jane Smiley, Vladimir Vojnovitsj, Cyprian Ekwensi, Peter Turrini, Joseph Furphy, Edwin Keppel Bennett”

Bart Chabot, T. S. Eliot, Thomas van Aalten, Christoph W. Bauer. Luís Fernando Veríssimo, Mark Haddon

De Nederlandse dichter en schrijver Bart Chabot werd geboren in Den Haag op 26 september 1954. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2010 en eveneens alle tags voor Bart Chabot op dit blog.



haagse schimmen

het bestaat nog
het den haag van louis couperus
zijn geboortehuis op de mauritskade
de surinamestraat, het nassauplein
sophialaan, javastraat
het kurhaus, hotel des indes
de scheveningse bosjes
het bleef nagenoeg ongeschonden bewaard

zelfs de personages die couperus’
haagse romans bevolken komen voor in de stad
de van lowe’s, de van naghels
de ruyvenaers, de saetzema’s
al dragen zij nu een andere naam

toch was ik verrast iemand te ontmoeten
die couperus persoonlijk had gekend
— de mooiste barbierswinkel — zei dolf brouwers
— waar ik ooit werkte was figaro
in de zeestraat
de eigenaar heette kees
daar kwam de chic van den haag
prins hendrik, ministers, jonkheer van repelaer
het was allemaal even prachtig
mijn patroon was homoseksueel
‘s ochtends bevochtigde hij
een stukje crêpepapier uit de etalage
en maakte zo zijn lippen rood



disneyland paris bestaat vijf jaar
er valt confetti uit de wolken

we zitten aan de lunch
in het new york hotel
sebastiaan en ik lopen naar het buffet
ik til het deksel op
van een enorme vleesschotel
– pap – vraagt sebas – is dat kip?
van de damp beslaat mijn bril
– that’s duck sir – schiet een ober ons te hulp
het tafelzilver hangt plotseling
op eigen kracht in de lucht
– you mean donald? – vraag ik
wijzend op de eendenborstjes
stilte daalt over de tafels
dan stijgt homerisch gelach op

sebastiaan kijkt niet blij


Bart Chabot (Den Haag, 26 september 1954)

Lees verder “Bart Chabot, T. S. Eliot, Thomas van Aalten, Christoph W. Bauer. Luís Fernando Veríssimo, Mark Haddon”

Mark Haddon, William Self, Jane Smiley, Vladimir Vojnovitsj, Cyprian Ekwensi, Peter Turrini, Edwin Keppel Bennett, Joseph Furphy

De Engelse schrijver Mark Haddon werd geboren op 26 september 1962 in Northampton. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2010


Uit: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

„My name is Christopher John Francis Boone. I know all the countries of the world and their capital cities and every prime number up to 7,057.
Eight years ago, when I first met Siobhan, she showed me this picture
[sad face]
and I knew that it meant ‘sad,’ which is what I felt when I found the dead dog.
Then she showed me this picture
[smiley face]
and I knew that it meant ‘happy’, like when I’m reading about the Apollo space missions, or when I am still awake at 3 am or 4 am in the morning and I can walk up and down the street and pretend that I am the only person in the whole world.
Then she drew some other pictures
[various happy, sad, confused, surprised faces]
but I was unable to say what these meant.
I got Siobhan to draw lots of these faces and then write down next to them exactly what they meant. I kept the piece of paper in my pocket and took it out when I didn’t understand what someone was saying. But it was very difficult to decide which of the diagrams was most like the face they were making because people’s faces move very quickly.
When I told Siobhan that I was doing this, she got out a pencil and another piece of paper and said it probably made people feel very
[confused face]
and then she laughed. So I tore the original piece of paper up and threw it away. And Siobhan apologised. And now if I don’t know what someone is saying I ask them what they mean or I walk away.“


Mark Haddon (Northampton, 26 september 1962)

Lees verder “Mark Haddon, William Self, Jane Smiley, Vladimir Vojnovitsj, Cyprian Ekwensi, Peter Turrini, Edwin Keppel Bennett, Joseph Furphy”

T. S. Eliot, Bart Chabot, Thomas van Aalten, Christoph W. Bauer, Mark Haddon, William Self, Jane Smiley, Vladimir Vojnovitsj, Cyprian Ekwensi, Peter Turrini, Edwin Keppel Bennett, Joseph Furphy

De Engels-Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver T. S. Eliot werd op 26 september 1888 geboren in St.Louis, Missouri. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2007 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

The Waste Land

“Nam Sibyllam quidem Cumis ego ipse oculis meis
vidi in ampulla pendere, et cum illi pueri dicerent:
Sibylla ti theleis; respondebat illa: apothanein thelo.”

  1. The Burial Of The Dead

April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.
Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbergersee
With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade,
And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten,
And drank coffee, and talked for an hour.
Bin gar keine Russin, stamm’ aus Litauen, echt deutsch.
And when we were children, staying at the archduke’s,
My cousin’s, he took me out on a sled,
And I was frightened. He said, Marie,
Marie, hold on tight. And down we went.
In the mountains, there you feel free.
I read, much of the night, and go south in the winter.

What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow
Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man,
You cannot say, or guess, for you know only
A heap of broken images, where the sun beats,
And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief,
And the dry stone no sound of water. Only
There is shadow under this red rock,
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
        Frisch weht der Wind
Der Heimat zu
Mein Irisch Kind,
Wo weilest du?
“You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
“They called me the hyacinth girl.”
––Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
Looking into the heart of light, the silence.
Oed’ und leer das Meer.

Madame Sosostris, famous clairvoyante,
Had a bad cold, nevertheless
Is known to be the wisest woman in Europe,
With a wicked pack of cards. Here, said she,
Is your card, the drowned Phoenician Sailor,
(Those are pearls that were his eyes. Look!)
Here is Belladonna, the Lady of the Rocks,
The lady of situations.
Here is the man with three staves, and here the Wheel,
And here is the one-eyed merchant, and this card,
Which is blank, is something he carries on his back,
Which I am forbidden to see. I do not find
The Hanged Man. Fear death by water.
I see crowds of people, walking round in a ring.
Thank you. If you see dear Mrs. Equitone,
Tell her I bring the horoscope myself:
One must be so careful these days.

Unreal City,
Under the brown fog of a winter dawn,
A crowd flowed over London Bridge, so many,
I had not thought death had undone so many.
Sighs, short and infrequent, were exhaled,
And each man fixed his eyes before his feet.
Flowed up the hill and down King William Street,
To where Saint Mary Woolnoth kept the hours
With a dead sound on the final stroke of nine.
There I saw one I knew, and stopped him, crying “Stetson!
“You who were with me in the ships at Mylae!
“That corpse you planted last year in your garden,
“Has it begun to sprout? Will it bloom this year?
“Or has the sudden frost disturbed its bed?
“Oh keep the Dog far hence, that’s friend to men,
“Or with his nails he’ll dig it up again!
“You! hypocrite lecteur! – mon semblable, – mon frere!”


T. S. Eliot (26 september 1888 – 4 januari 1965)
Buste door Celia Scott


De Nederlandse  Dichter en schrijver Bart Chabot werd geboren in Den Haag op 26 september 1954. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2007 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.


disneyland paris bestaat vijf jaar
er valt confetti uit de wolken

we zitten aan de lunch
in het new york hotel
sebastiaan en ik lopen naar het buffet
ik til het deksel op
van een enorme vleesschotel
– pap – vraagt sebas – is dat kip?
van de damp beslaat mijn bril
– that’s duck sir – schiet een ober ons te hulp
het tafelzilver hangt plotseling
op eigen kracht in de lucht
– you mean donald? – vraag ik
wijzend op de eendenborstjes
stilte daalt over de tafels
dan stijgt homerisch gelach op

sebastiaan kijkt niet blij


Hoe ik de herfst uitstelde

het was een van de eerste dagen van september
een vrijdag
honderd procent in orde
strakblauwe hemel
niks op af te dingen
deze lucht was voor mij bestemd

tot om een uur of vier
een vloot regenwolken
de boel kwam zieken
-o nee, daar komt niks van in-

ik bedacht me geen moment
en pakte een vuilniszak
uit het keukenkastje
liep het balkon op
knappe jongen die me tegenhield)
trok de zak open
en deed er één voor één
de wolken in

ziezo, dat was dat


Bart Chabot (Den Haag, 26 september 1954)


De Nederlandse schrijver Thomas van Aalten werd geboren in Huissen bij Arnhem op 26 september 1978. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2007 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

Uit: Stervende diva’s

“Two hearts under a skyscraper
Suede, Stay Together

Terwijl mijn relatie met Candy voortreutelde bleef ik Lorraine bezoeken. In het geheim, diep in de nacht. Zwervend van bed naar bed, in het late verkeer van de buitenstad, het geloei van sirenes. In de verte hoorde ik de goederentreinen razen terwijl de rest van de stad vooral bezig was met slapen. Behalve in het centrum, waar nachtclubs en bordelen rokerig en donker verscholen lagen tussen de gesloten winkels. De rest van de stad had niets door. Zelfs de rest van het land niet.

Hier, buiten de stad, lag het domein. Het stadsdeel waar Lorraine woonde, lag nabij de snelweg. Als het ’s nachts twee uur was geweest, verliet ik het huis van Candy, gelegen in het drukke centrum van de hoofdstad, en vertrok ik naar Lorraine. Lorraine was de nachtelijke engel, de bewaakster van de duistere liefde.

Met mijn Citroën DS was ik precies achttien minuten kwijt om er te komen, veel sneller dan te voet. Lorraine wist meestal niet precies wanneer ik aankwam, het hing er maar net van af. Soms kwam ik nachten achtereen niet. Soms kwam ik nachten achterelkaar.

En als ik er dan was, stonden we meestal uit het raam te kijken naar de vele lichtjes, zij tegen me aangedrukt. In het donker vielen we niet op voor anderen. Metershoog in een flat. We hielden elkaar vast. Dat was iets wat we altijd deden. We huiverden alletwee en het enige dat hielp was elkaar vasthouden. Dan leek het alsof onze bloedsomloop één werd en dat was zeer prettig te noemen. Twee harten die tegelijk klopten, waar zag je dat nog. In de winter, wanneer de sneeuw op het kozijn bleef liggen, zei Lorraine: ‘Kijk, suiker. Er ligt suiker op de rand.’ De suiker kwam uit de lucht vallen, speciaal voor de zwijgende sterren achter het raam. Want ik voelde me een filmster. Een stille filmster.


Thomas van Aalten (Huissen, 26 september 1978)


De Oostenrijkse dichter, schrijver en vertaler Christoph W. Bauer werd geboren in Kolbnitz op 26 september 1968. Zie ook mijn blog van 8 juni 2009



vorausschauend auch nur revuen sie sahen
was auf sie zu kam waren krummgelaufene
absätze und gerieten im schuhwerk der
geschwister auf die schiefe bahn
erkannten die rückstrahler der zukunft in
elternreden bremslichtern und gaben gas
auf ihren klapprädern strampelten sich aus
fotoalben dem ballast der augenerde
in luftreflexionen verborgen vor sich selbst
als gäbe es sie gar nicht abgeworfen von
predigten ums taschengeld betrogen matthai
am letzten sei dank hörten sie in der messe
wer sein leben findet wird es verlieren


Christoph W. Bauer (Kolbnitz, 26 september 1968)


De Engelse schrijver Mark Haddon werd geboren op 26 september 1962 in Northampton. Hij volgder een opleiding aan de Uppingham School en het Merton College, Oxford, waar hij studeerde Engels. In 2003 won Haddon de Whitbread Book of the Year Award en in 2004 de Commonwealth Writers’ Prize Overall Best First Book voor zijn roman The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, een boek dat is geschreven vanuit het perspectief van een jongen met het syndroom van Asperger. Zijn tweede roman, A Spot of Bother, werd gepubliceerd in september 2006. Mark Haddon is ook bekend om zijn reeks van Agent Z boeken. Van een ervan, Agent Z en de Pinguïn van Mars, werd in 1996 een BBC sitcom voor kinderen gemaakt.

Uit: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

It was 7 minutes after midnight. The dog was lying on the grass in the middle of the lawn in front of Mrs Shears’ house. Its eyes were closed. It looked as if it was running on its side, the way dogs run when they think they are chasing a cat in a dream. But the dog was not running or asleep. The dog was dead. There was a garden fork sticking out of the dog. The points of the fork must have gone all the way through the dog and into the ground because the fork had not fallen over. I decided that the dog was probably killed with the fork because I could not see any other wounds in the dog and I do not think you would stick a garden fork into a dog after it had died for some other reason, like cancer for example, or a road accident. But I could not be certain about this.
I went through Mrs Shears’ gate, closing it behind me. I walked onto her lawn and knelt beside the dog. I put my hand on the muzzle of the dog. It was still warm.
The dog was called Wellington. It belonged to Mrs Shears who was our friend. She lived on the opposite side of the road, two houses to the left.
Wellington was a poodle. Not one of the small poodles that have hairstyles but a big poodle. It had curly black fur, but when you got close you could see that the skin underneath the fur was a very pale yellow, like chicken.
I stroked Wellington and wondered who had killed him, and why.“


 Mark Haddon (Northampton, 26 september 1962)


De Engelse schrijver, criticus en columnist William Self werd geboren in Londen op 26 september 1961. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2007 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008. en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

Uit: The Book of Dave

 „The little kids who’d left the manor with Carl had run on ahead, up the slope towards the Layn, the avenue of trees that formed the spine of Ham. These thick-trunked, stunted crinkleleafs bordered the cultivated land with a dark, shimmering froth. Carl saw brown legs, tan T-shirts and mops of curly hair flashing among the trunks as the young Hamsters scattered into the woodland. Reedy whoops of joy reached Carl’s ears, and he wished he could go with them into Norfend, galumphing through the undergrowth, sloshing into the boggy hollows to flush out the motos, then herd them towards their wallows.
Up from the manor in a line behind Carl came the older lads – those between ten and fourteen years old – whose graft it was to oversee the motos’ wallowing, before assigning the beasts their day’s toil. Despite everything, Carl remained the acknowledged gaffer of this group, and, as he swerved off the path along one of the linchets dividing the rips, the other eight followed suit, so that the whole party were walking abreast, following the bands of wheatie as they rolled up the rise.“


William Self (Londen, 26 september 1961)


De Amerikaanse schrijfster Jane Smiley werd geboren op 26 september 1949 in Los Angeles. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

Uit: A Thousand Acres

At sixty miles per hour, you could pass our farm in a minute, on County Road 686, which ran due north into the T intersection at Cabot Street Road. Cabot Street Road was really just another country blacktop, except that five miles west it ran into and out of the town of Cabot. On the western edge of Cabot, it became Zebulon County Scenic Highway, and ran for three miles along the curve of the Zebulon River, before the river turned south and the Scenic continued west into Pike. The T intersection of CR 686 perched on a little rise, a rise nearly as imperceptible as the bump in the center of an inexpensive plate.
From that bump, the earth was unquestionably flat, the sky unquestionably domed, and it seemed to me when I was a child in school, learning about Columbus, that in spite of what my teacher said, ancient cultures might have been onto something. No globe or map fully convinced me that Zebulon County was not the center of the universe. Certainly, Zebulon County, where the earth was flat, was one spot where a sphere (a seed, a rubber ball, a ballbearing) must come to perfect rest and once at rest must send a taproot downward into the ten-foot-thick topsoil.
Because the intersection was on this tiny rise, you could see our buildings, a mile distant, at the southern edge of the farm. A mile to the east, you could see three silos that marked the northeastern corner, and if you raked your gaze from the silos to the house and barn, then back again, you would take in the immensity of the piece of land my father owned, six hundred forty acres, a whole section, paid for, no encumbrances, as flat and fertile, black, friable, and exposed as any piece of land on the face of the earth.
If you looked west from the intersection, you saw no sign of anything remotely scenic in the distance. That was because the Zebulon River had cut down through topsoil and limestone, and made its pretty course a valley below the level of the surrounding farmlands. Nor, except at night, did you see any sign of Cabot. You saw only this, two sets of farm buildings surrounded by fields. In the nearer set lived the Ericsons, who had daughters the ages of my sister Rose and myself, and in the farther set lived the Clarks, whose sons, Loren and Jess, were in grammar school when we were in junior high. Harold Clark was my father’s best friend. He had five hundred acres and no mortgage. The Ericsons had three hundred seventy acres and a mortgage.“


Jane Smiley (Los Angeles, 26 september 1949)


De Russische schrijver en dissident Vladimir Nikolajevitsj Vojnovitsj werd geboren in Doesjanbe op  26 september 1932. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

Uit: Die denkwürdigen Abenteuer des Soldaten Iwan Tschonkin (Vertaald door Alexander Kaempfe)

„Ob das auf den Seiten dieses Buches Erzählte wirklich geschehen ist oder nicht, kann man heute nicht mehr mit Sicherheit sagen. Der Vorfall, mit dem die ganze Geschichte (die sich fast bis in unsere Tage hinzieht) ihren Anfang nahm, spielte sich im Dorf Krassnoje vor so langer Zeit ab, daß fast keine Augenzeugen übriggeblieben sind. Diese wenigen erzählen die Geschichte verschieden und einige können sich überhaupt nicht mehr daran erinnern. Um die Wahrheit zu sagen, war dieser Vorfall auch nicht wichtig genug, um ihn so lange im Gedächtnis zu behalten. Ich jedoch habe alles zusammengetragen, was ich zu dieser Sache in Erfahrung brachte. Dann habe ich von mir aus noch einiges hinzugefügt, vielleicht mehr als ich hörte. Zuletzt erschien mir die Geschichte so unterhaltsam, daß ich mich dazu entschloß, sie aufzuschreiben. Sollte sie Ihnen uninteressant, langweilig oder gar dumm erscheinen, sind Sie natürlich berechtigt, so zu tun, als hätte ich nichts erzählt.
Das nachfolgend Berichtete geschah unmittelbar vor dem Krieg: so etwa Ende Mai oder Anfang Juni 1941.
Es war an einem ganz gewöhnlichen, für die Jahreszeit typischen heißen Tag. Alle Kolchosbauern arbeiteten auf den Feldern, während Njura Beljaschowa, die bei der Post angestellt war und nicht in direkter Beziehung zum Kolchos stand, ihren freien Tag damit verbrachte, im Gemüsegarten Kartoffeln anzuhäufeln.
Es war so heiß, daß Njura schon völlig außer Atem war, als sie drei Beete hinter sich hatte. Ihr Kleid war auf dem Rücken und unter den Achselhöhlen durchgeschwitzt und wurde beim Wiedertrocknen salzig, weiß und hart. Der Schweiß rann ihr in die Augen. Njura richtete sich auf, um das widerspenstige Haar unters Kopftuch zu schieben. Bei dieser Gelegenheit blickte sie zur Sonne hoch, um festzustellen, ob bald Mittag sein würde. Doch Njura bekam die Sonne nicht zu sehen. Ein großer eiserner Vogel mit einem gekrümmten Schnabel hatte sich vor die Sonne und den Himmel geschoben und stürzte direkt auf sie herab.
»O weh!« rief Njura entsetzt, schlug die Hände vors Gesicht und ließ sich wie tot in eine Furche fallen.
Der Eber Borjka, der damit beschäftigt war, die Erde neben dem Haus aufzuwühlen, sprang zur Seite, vergewisserte sich indessen, daß ihm keine Gefahr drohte, und kehrte an seinen alten Platz zurück.“


 Vladimir Vojnovitsj (Doesjanbe, 26 september 1932)


De Nigeriaanse schrijver Cyprian Ekwensi werd op 26 september 1921 in Nigeria geboren in Minna. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

Uit: Jagua Nana

„The sigh was a prayer to God to stay back the years and a challenge to herself to employ all the coquettish arts to help Him. She did not often remember that if her son had lived he would today be roughly as old as her lover. Freddie was hardly more than a boy, with his whole ambitious life before him. He was a teacher at the Nigerian National College who badly wanted to travel overseas to complete his law studies. He had applied for a Government Scholarship, but did not pin his faith on

being selected. She knew Freddie deserved a good girl to marry him, raise his children and ‘shadow’ him in all his ambitions. But Jagua was too much in love with him to make a reasonable exit. And she wanted Freddie as her husband because only a young man would still be strong enough to work and earn when she would be on the decline. Men would not be wanting her in six years’ time, when – even

now – girls of eighteen could be had. At forty-five, she had her figure and her tact to guide her.

She knew that, seen under the dim lights of her favourite night spot, the

Tropicana – from a distance – her face looked beautiful. In any light she was proud of her body, which could model for any painter or sculptor. When she walked down a street, male eyes followed the wiggle of her hips which came with studied unconsciousness. Sometimes she was ashamed of her too passionate love-making, but Freddie did not seem so embarrassed now as he used to be at first. When she painted her face and lifted her breasts and exposed what must be concealed and concealed what must be exposed, she could out-class any girl who did not know what to do with her God-given female talent.“


Cyprian Ekwensi (26 september 1921 – 4 november 2007)


De Oostenrijkse schrijver Peter Turrini werd geboren op  26. September 1944 in St. Margarethen im Lavanttal. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2009.

Uit: Die Verhaftung des Johann Nepomuk Nestroy

„Nestroy geht schnell durch das Bühnentürl des Theaters an der Wien, einige Begeisterte stürzen auf ihn zu und bitten ihn, Witze aus dem Stück zu wiederholen. Nestroy antwortet, er könne nur gegen Bezahlung lustig sein, ohne Gage falle ihm nichts ein, und läuft zu einer wartenden Equipage. Er steigt in die Equipage, sie fährt weg. In der Equipage sitzt eine junge, schöne Frau, sein Frau, Wilhemine, geborene Wilhelmine Phillipine von Nespiensi. Sie ist ein paar Jahre jünger als Nestroy, hat volles, rotes Haar, das von einer Kopfhaube kaum gebändigt wird. Die Eheleute haben sich sechs Jahre lang nicht gesehen. Sie werden von der schnellen Fahrt der Equipage durchgerüttelt und starren einander an. Nestroy geht in Gedanken das ganze Arsenal seiner Vorwürfe durch: “Warum hast du mich verlassen?” wird er sie fragen.


Nestroy sitzt im Kaffeehaus an seinem Stammtisch und trinkt. Der Besitzer des Kaffehauses, Herr Anselm Weidinger, den sie “die Amsel” nennen, schenkt Nestroy aus einer Weinflasche nach. Nestroy trinkt das Glas in einem Zug aus. “Das wievielte war das?” fragt Nestroy den Besitzer. “Das Vierte”, sagt dieser. “Nach meiner Berechnung hab’ ich erst drei getrunken”, sagt Nestroy. “Ich verlaß mich ganz und gar auf die Berechnungen des Herrn Nestroy”, sagt Herr Anselm Weidinger und schenkt ihm das nächste Glas ein. “Erst nach einem Dutzend kann ich vergessen, was für ein Mißerfolg der heutige Abend war”, sagt Nestroy. “Aber Herr von Nestroy”, antwortet Weidinger lachend, “Sie reden von einem Mißerfolg und das Publikum jubelt. Sie sind wirklich der g’spaßigste Mensch von Wien”. Er schenkt ihm ein weiteres Glas ein. Einige Gäste prosten Nestroy zu.“


Peter Turrini (St. Margarethen im Lavanttal, 26. September 1944)


De Engels schrijver, dichter en germanist Edwin Keppel Bennett werd geboren op 26 september 1887 in Wareham, Dorset. Hij werd opgeleid aan Elm House School, Wareham en aan de Universiteit van Straatsburg. Hij ging in 1914 naar het Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, en behaalde zijn BA in 1919 en zijn MA in 1923. In 1923 werd hij ‘onofficiële fellow’ van het college en een Cambridge University lector voor Duits. Officiële fellow werd hij in 1926, in 1931 werd hij Senior Tutor. Dat bleef hij tot hij in 1952 voorzitter van het College werd. Tijdens de Eerste Wereldoorlog diende Bennett in een inlichtingen-eenheid van het Britse leger in de rang van tweede luitenant (1916-1918), vooral in Palestina. Bennetts eerste boek, Built in Jerusalem’s Wall: A Book in praise of Jerusalem, werd gepubliceerd onder het pseudoniem ‘Francis Keppel’ in 1920. Zijn A History of the German “Novelle” from Goethe to Thomas Mann verscheen bij de Cambridge University Press in 1934

The Stranger

The room grows silent, and the dead return:
Whispering faintly in the corridor,
They try the latch and steal across the floor
Towards my chair; and in the hush I turn
Eagerly to the shadows, and discern
The ghosts of friends whom I shall see no more,
Come back, come back from some Lethean shore
To the old kindly life for which they yearn.

How still they are! O, wherefore can I see
No sign of recognition in the eyes
That gaze in mine? Have they forgotten me
Who was their friend? They fade into the gloom;
And on my heart their plaintive murmur dies:
“A stranger now, a stranger fills his room.


Edwin Keppel Bennett (26 september 1887 – 13 juni 1958)
Wareham, Dorset (Geen portret beschikbaar)


De Australische dichter en schrijver Joseph Furphy werd geboren op 26 september 1843 in Yering, een voorstad van Melbourne Yering. Furphy schreef meestal onder het pseudoniem Tom Collins. Zijn vader, een pachter, was in 1840 geëmigreerd uit Tande Ragee in Ierland naar Australië. In 1905 verhuisde Furphy naar West-Australië, waar zijn zonen woonden. Hij bouwde een huis in Swanbourne, een voorstad van Perth, waar nu het hoofdkantoor is van Fellowship of Australian Writers Zijn bekendste werk is Such Is Life, een fictief verhaal over het leven van de plattelandsbevolking, met inbegrip van veedrijvers, krakers en rondtrekkende reizigers in het zuiden van New South Wales en Victoria tijdens de jaren 1880. Het boek bevat een reeks losjes verwante verhalen van verschillende mensen die de verteller ontmoet op zijn reis door het land. De titel zou zijn afgeleid van de laatste woorden van de beroemdste straatrover van Australë: Ned Kelly.

Uit: Such is Life

„Unemployed at last!


Scientifically, such a contingency can never have befallen of itself. According to one theory of the Universe, the momentum of Original Impress has been tending toward this far-off, divine event ever since a scrap of fire-mist flew from the solar centre to form our planet. Not this event alone, of course; but every occurrence, past and present, from the fall of captured Troy to the fall of a captured insect. According to another theory, I hold an independent diploma as one of the architects of our Social System, with a commission to use my own judgment, and take my own risks, like any other unit of humanity. This theory, unlike the first, entails frequent hitches and cross-purposes; and to some malign operation of these I should owe my present holiday.

Orthodoxly, we are reduced to one assumption: namely, that my indomitable old Adversary has suddenly called to mind Dr. Watts’s friendly hint respecting the easy enlistment of idle hands.

Good. If either of the two first hypotheses be correct, my enforced furlough tacitly conveys the responsibility of extending a ray of information, however narrow and feeble, across the path of such fellow-pilgrims as have led lives more sedentary than my own—particularly as I have enough money to frank myself in a frugal way for some weeks, as well as to purchase the few requisites of authorship.

If, on the other hand, my supposed safeguard of drudgery has been cut off at the meter by that amusingly short-sighted old Conspirator, it will be only fair to notify him that his age and experience, even his captivating habits and well-known hospitality, will be treated with scorn, rather than respect, in the paragraphs which he virtually forces me to write; and he is hereby invited to view his own feather on the fatal dart.

Whilst a peculiar defect—which I scarcely like to call an oversight in mental construction—shuts me out from the flowery pathway of the romancer, a co-ordinate requital endows me, I trust, with the more sterling, if less ornamental qualities of the chronicler. This fairly equitable compensation embraces, I have been told, three distinct attributes: an intuition which reads men like sign-boards; a limpid veracity; and a memory which habitually stereotypes all impressions except those relating to personal injuries.

Submitting, then, to the constitutional interdict already glanced at, and availing myself of the implied license to utilise that homely talent of which I am the bailee, I purpose taking certain entries from my diary, and amplifying these to the minutest detail of occurrence or conversation. This will afford to the observant reader a fair picture of Life, as that engaging problem has presented itself to me.“


Joseph Furphy (26 september 1843 – 13 september 1912)


De Braziliaanse schrijver Luís Fernando Veríssimo werd geboren op 26 september 1936 in Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul. Veríssimo is de zoon van de Braziliaanse schrijver Erico Veríssimo en woonde in zijn jeugd samen met zijn vader in de Verenigde Staten. Veríssimo is een grote fan van jazz, en speelt zelf saxofoon in een band genaamd Jazz 6. Net als veel andere Braziliaanse intellectuelen geniet hij van de cultuur van Rio de Janeiro. Veríssimo is een criticus van rechtse politici, vooral van de voormalige president, Fernando Henrique Cardoso. Verder is Veríssimo dol op voetbal en heeft hij ook veel teksten geschreven over deze passie.

Uit: Borges and the Eternal Orangutans (Vertaald door Jull Costa)

„I will try to be your eyes, Jorge. I am following the advice you gave me when we said goodbye: “Write, and you will remember.” I will try to remember, with more exactitude this time, so that you can see what I saw, so that you can unveil the mystery and arrive at the truth. We always write in order to remember the truth. When we invent, it is only in ordeto remember the truth more exactly.

Geography is destiny. If Buenos Aires were not so close to Porto Alegre, none of this would have happened, but I did not see that I was being subtly summoned or that this story needed me in order to be written. I did not see that I was being plunged headfirst into the plot, like a pen into an inkwell.

The circumstances of my visit to Buenos Aires were, as I now know, planned with all the care of someone setting a trap for a particular animal. At the time, however, enthusiasm blinded me to this. I did not realise that I had been chosen as an accessory to a crime, as neutral and innocent as the mirrors in a room.

The 1985 Israfel Society Conference, the first meeting of Edgar Allan Poe specialists to be held outside the northern hemisphere, was to take place in Buenos Aires, less than a thousand kilometres from my apartment in Bonfim, and was, therefore, within the budget of a poor translator and teacher of English (which, as you know, is what I am). One of the invited speakers was to be Joachim Rotkopf, who was to lecture on the origins of European surrealism to be found in Poe’s work, precisely the topic that had provoked the controversy with Professor Xavier Urquiza from Mendoza, and that had kept me so amused in the pages of The Gold-Bug, the Society journal. All this seemed to me a mere accumulation of happy and irresistible coincidences. I decided not to resist. At least, I thought I decided.“


Luís Fernando Veríssimo (Porto Alegre, 26 september 1936)

Jane Smiley, Vladimir Vojnovitsj, Cyprian Ekwensi, Peter Turrini

De Amerikaanse schrijfster Jane Smiley werd geboren op 26 september 1949 in Los Angeles. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008.


Uit: Ten Days in the Hills


„Max was still sleeping, neatly, as always, his head framed by the sunny white of his rectangular pillow, his eyelids smooth over the orbs of his eyes, his lips pale and soft, his bare shoulders square on the bed. While Elena was gazing at him, he sighed. Sometime in the night, he had turned back the white comforter; its fold crossed him diagonally between the hip and the knee. The morning sunlight burnished his hands (right on top of left), and sparkled through his silvery chest hair. His cock lay to one side, nonchalant. Elena smoothed the very tips of his chest hair with her hand so that she could just feel it tickling her palm, and then circled his testicles with her index finger. She was sleepy herself, probably from dreaming of the Oscars. What she could remember were more like recurring images of the bright stage as she had seen it from their seats, smiling figures walking around on it, turning this way and that, breasting the audience suddenly as if jumping into surf—not unhappy images, but not restful. The bright figures had stayed with her all night, sometimes actually looking frightened, or turning toward her so that she had to remind herself in her dream that they were happy, well fed, successful.

She sat up quietly, so as not to disturb him. She saw that all of their clothes—his tux and her vintage gold silk-velvet flapper dress—were draped neatly over the backs of a couple of chairs. Her silver sandals and her silver mesh evening bag lay on the windowsill where she had set them when she walked in the bedroom door. He had taken her to the Oscars and then to the Governor’s Ball, because she, of course, had never been, though he himself had an invitation every year—his movie Grace had won Best Screenplay in the 1970s (and in fact was listed on three “hundred best films of the twentieth century” lists that she had looked up on the Internet: seventy-seventh on one, eighty-third on another, and eighty-fifth best on the third). At fifty-eight, Max had a certain sort of fame in Hollywood: most people had heard of him, but lots of younger ones assumed he was dead.“



Jane Smiley (Los Angeles, 26 september 1949)


De Russische schrijver en dissident Vladimir Nikolajevitsj Vojnovitsj werd geboren in Doesjanbe op  26 september 1932. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008.


Uit: Monumental Propaganda (Vertaald door Andrew Bromfield)


But Bochkareva had misunderstood Aglaya. Her words about filth had indeed been intended in a figurative sense, and not the one in which Bochkareva had taken them.

When she got home, Aglaya was absolutely beside herself. No
, it was not Stalin’s crimes but the criticism of him that was what had astounded her most of all. How dare they? How dare they? She walked around all three rooms of her flat, beating her tough little fists against her tough little hips and repeating aloud the same words, addressed to her invisible opponents, over and over again: “How did you dare? Who do you think you are? Who are you to raise your hand against him?”

“And you, disdainful descendants . . .”—Lermontov’s line, which she thought she had forgotten long ago, came drifting out from some dark corner of her memory . . .

She had never believed in God, but she would not have been surprised in the least if Porosyaninov’s tongue had withered or his nose had fallen off or he had been paralyzed by a stroke in the middle of giving his speech. The words he had uttered in the House of the Railroad Worker had been too absolutely blasphemous.

She had never believed in a God in heaven, but her earthly god was Stalin. His portrait, the famous one with him lighting up his pipe, holding a lighted match close to the slightly singed mustache, had hung over her writing desk since the times before the war, and during the war it had traveled the partisan forest trails with her and then returned to its place. A modest portrait in a simple limewood frame. In moments of doubt over her most startlingly dramatic actions, Aglaya would raise her eyes to the portrait, and Comrade Stalin seemed to screw up his own eyes slightly and urge her on with his kind and wise smile: Yes, Aglaya, you can do that, you must do it, and I believe that you will do it. Yes, she had been forced to make some difficult decisions in her life—harsh, even cruel, decisions concerning various people—but she had done it for the sake of the Party, the country, the people and the future generations. Stalin had taught her that for the sake of the sublime idea it was worth sacrificing everything, and no one could be pitied.

Of course, she respected the other leaders as well, the members of the Politburo and the secretaries of the Central Committee, but nonetheless she thought of them as just people. Very clever and bold, utterly devoted to our ideals, but people. They could make mistakes in their thoughts, words and actions, but only he was ineffably great and infallible, and his every word and every action expressed such transcendent genius that his contemporaries and the generations to come should accept them as unconditionally correct and absolutely binding.”



Vladimir Vojnovitsj (Doesjanbe, 26 september 1932)


De Nigeriaanse schrijver Cyprian Ekwensi werd op 26 september 1921 in Nigeria geboren in Minna. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006 en ook mijn blog van 26 september 2008.


Uit: Jagua Nana


„Jagua had just had a cold bath, and, in the manner of African women, she sat on a low stool with a mirror propped between her bare knees, gazing at her wet hair. Only one cloth – a flowered cotton print – concealed her nakedness, and she had wound it over her breasts and under her armpits. Her arms and shoulders were bare, and she sat with the cloth bunched between her thighs so that the mirror bit into the skin between her knees.

She raised her arm and ran the comb through the wiry kinks, and her breasts swelled into a sensuous arc and her eyes tensed with the pain as the kinks straightened. From the skin on her long arms and beautiful shoulders the drops of speckled water slid down chasing one another. She saw Freddie pass by her door just then, saw him hesitate when he caught a glimpse of the dark naked hair under her armpits. Then he hurried past into his own room on the floor below, ca
lling as he went:

‘Jagwa!. … Jagwa Nana!…’

She knew he was teasing. They called her Jagua because of her good looks and stunning fashions. They said she was Ja-gwa, after the famous British prestige car.

‘I’m comin’ – jus’ now!…Call me when you ready!’

She could sense the irritation in his voice. As always when she did not like where they were going she delayed her toilet, and Freddie must know by now that

she disliked intellectual groups, especially the British Council groups which she thought false and stiff. On the other hand, Freddie could never do without them. He said they were a link with Britain from which stemmed so much tradition. Like Freddie she was an Ibo from Eastern Nigeria, but when she spoke to him she always used pidgin English, because living in Lagos City they did not want too many embarrassing reminders of clan or custom. They and many others were practically strangers in a town where all came to make fast money by faster means, and greedily to seek positions that yielded even more money.

She heard the clatter of Freddie’s shoes as he hurried down the steps to his own room on the floor below. She waited for him to come up, and when he would not come she went on combing her hair. By an odd tilt of the mirror she saw, suddenly revealed, the crow’s-feet at the corners of her eyes and the tired dark rings beneath.

‘I done old,’ she sighed. ‘Sometimes I tink say Freddie he run from me because

I done old. God ‘ave mercy!’ she sighed again.“



Cyprian Ekwensi (26 september 1921 –  4 november 2007)


De Oostenrijkse schrijver Peter Turrini werd geboren op  26. September 1944 in St. Margarethen im Lavanttal (Wolfsberg) en groeide op in Maria Saal in Kärnten. Van 1963 tot 1971 had hij verschillende beroepen. Sinds 1971 woont en werkt hij als zelfstandig schrijver in Wenen en Retz. Hij schrijft o.a. theaterstukken, gedichten, essays en draaiboeken. Turrini werd bekend door Rozznjogd (1971), Sauschlachten (1972) en de televisieserie Alpensaga (1974–1979).


Uit: Die Liebe in Madagaskar


“Die Schauspielerin:

Ich habe gehört, die Österreicher essen alle so wahnsinnig gern Mozartkugeln. Stimmt das?


Auch nicht mehr als die Japaner.


Die Schauspielerin:

Dieser tolle Film, den Sie da drehen, kann man dazu noch etwas sagen, ich meine zum Inhalt?


Der Film? Welcher Film?

Die Schauspielerin:

Die Liebe in Madagaskar.


Das Drehbuch ist noch nicht ganz fertig.

Die Schauspielerin:

Wenn der Mann mit der Frau in die Oper geht, und sie ihm nahher sagt, daß
sie krank ist …



Die Schauspielerin:

Könnte sie diese Krankheit nicht erfunden haben?


Wieso erfunden?

Die Schauspielerin:

Sie möchte das Maß seiner Liebe erkunden. Frauen haben Angst, schreckliche Angst, daß man sie aus irgendwelchen Gründen nicht mehr lieben könnte. Sie brauchen ständig Beweise der Liebe. Auch wenn sie diese bekommen, jeden Tag, sind sie keineswegs zufrieden. Es nährt nur ihre Sehnsucht nach immer häufigeren, immer größeren Beweisen.”



Peter Turrini (St. Margarethen im Lavanttal, 26. September 1944)

Bart Chabot , T. S. Eliot, William Self, Cyprian Ekwensi

De Nederlandse dichter en schrijver Bart Chabot  werd geboren in Den Haag op 26 september 1954. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006.


Uit: FC Dood

“Ik heb in dienst gezeten. Bij de Koninklijke Luchtmacht, als dienstplichtig militair. Van 1974 tot 1976.
In mei ’76 ging ik, zoals dat heet, met Groot Verlof.
Tot op de dag van vandaag ben ik oproepbaar. Als via de draadomroep een algehele mobilisatie wordt afgekondigd, dien ik mij terstond, dat wil zeggen: binnen vierentwintig uur, te melden bij mijn onderdeel, in afwachting van nadere instructies.

Mei 1999 kreeg ik een brief van kolonel Steggelweij.
In verband met de ‘veranderde veiligheidssituatie’ zou, naar het zich thans liet aanzien, ‘van mijn kwaliteiten in de toekomst geen gebruik worden gemaakt’, reden om mij, Eerste Luitenant der Koninklijke Luchtmacht, bij Hare Majesteit de Koningin ‘voor te dragen voor vervroegd eervol ontslag’.
Ik schreef het volgende terug. (Dat dan wél, ja. Een dergelijk buitenkansje liet ik me niet ontglippen.)

Lieve kolonel,
(Zoiets komt in die kringen als een mokerslag aan. Schrijf je die lieden aan als ‘Geacht kolonelsregime’ of ‘Geachte leden van de Bloedjunta’, dat is geen punt, daar verblikken of verblozen ze niet van. Maar schrijf je ‘Lieve kolonel’, dan bezorg je de andere kant, de ontvangende partij, een hoog Brokeback Mountain-gevoel, iets wat in die specifieke kringen
niet bijster populair is.)
Ik deel uw inschatting niet.

Natuurlijk ben ik verheugd over de wat u noemt ‘veranderde veiligheidssituatie’. U doelt, naar ik aanneem, op het omvallen van het IJzeren Gordijn. Vergis ik mij echter of is de situatie sinds de val van de Berlijnse Muur in sommige opzichten niet veeleer verslechterd? We hoeven maar naar het voormalige Joegoslavië te kijken of naar de randhaarden in de ex-Sovjet-Unie, om in te zien dat te veel optimisme tot bittere teleurstelling kan leiden, ja, zelfs tot ontgoocheling.”



Bart Chabot (Den Haag, 26 september 1954)



De Engels-Amerikaanse dichter en schrijver T. S. Eliot werd op 26 september 1888 geboren in St.Louis, Missouri. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006.



Miss Nancy Ellicott
Strode across the hills and broke them,
Rode across the hills and broke them–
The barren New England hills–
Riding to hounds
Over the cow-pasture.

Miss Nancy Ellicott smoked
And danced all the modern dances;
And her aunts were not quite sure how they felt about it,
But they knew that it was modern.

Upon the glazen shelves kept watch
Matthew and Waldo, guardians of the faith,
The army of unalterable law.




They are rattling breakfast plates in basement kitchens,
And along the trampled edges of the street
I am aware of the damp souls of housemaids
Sprouting despondently at area gates.

The brown waves of fog toss up to me
Twisted faces from the bottom of the street,
And tear from a passer-by with muddy skirts
An aimless smile that hovers in the air
And vanishes along the level of the roofs.



T. S. Eliot (26 september 1888 – 4 januari 1965)


De Engelse schrijver, criticus en columnist William Self werd geboren in Londen op 26 september 1961. Hij studeerde filosofie aan het Exeter College in Oxford. Self werkte ook als journaqlist en tekenaar en voor radio en televisie. Ook was hij lid van de punkband The Abusers. Tot 1996 kwam hij ook herhaaldelijk in de publiciteit wegens zijn heroineverslaving.


Uit: The Book of Dave


“Carl De´vu´sh, spindle-shanked, bleach-blond, lampburnt, twelve years old, kicked up buff puffs of sand with his bare feet as he scampered along the path from the manor. Although it was still early in the first tariff, the foglamp had already bored through the cloud and boiled the dew off the island. As he gained height and looked back over his shoulder, Carl saw first the homely notch of Manna Ba¨, then the shrub-choked slopes of the Gayt rising up beyond it. The sea mist had retreated offshore, where it hovered, a white-grey bank merging with the blue screen above. Wot if Eye woz up vair, Carl thought, up vair lyke ve Flyin I? He put himself in this lofty perspective and saw Ham, floating like a water beetle, thrusting out angled legs of grey stone deep into the placid waters of its ultramarine lagoon. The waters intensified the beetle island’s myriad greens: its golden wheatie crop, its purple, blue and mauve flowering buddyspike, its yellowy banks of pricklebush and its feathery stands of fireweed. The whole lustrous shell was picked out by a palisade of blisterweed, the lacy umbels of which trimmed the entire shoreline.

The real island was quite as vivified as any toyist vision, the southeast-facing undulation of land audibly hummed. Bees, drugged by the heat, lay down in the flowers, ants reclined on beds of leaf mould, flying rats gave a liquid coo-burble – then stoppered up. To the south a few gulls soared above the denser greenery of the Ferbiddun Zo¨n.”



William Self (Londen, 26 september 1961)


De Nigeriaanse schrijver Cyprian Ekwensi werd op 26 september 1921 in Nigeria geboren in Minna. Zie ook mijn blog van 26 september 2006.


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)