Friday, February 09, 2007

jeroen nieuwland; five poems

an angel must have fallen from the sky
with blinded eyes (so as not to shame the earth?)
she rests silently between two boys that carry her
away to safety, of which she is in need.
although no one else can see her, they innocent
walk, one pouting, one with defiance on his face,
preempting any who might question them.
she wounded, holds white flowers in her hand
that droop, to not offend the wings draped wearily
along her arching back, damaged from tumbling
through the sky. unclear who bears the weight,
that they themselves perpetuate. this remains,
two boys, an angel, flowers, in equal burden
bound, without chance to quit their covenant.

(written after the finnish painter Hugo Simberg's (1873-1917) painting the wounded angel)


Shall we go to bed they both said as
he sat at his desk and she stood before
the mirror that hung in a wardrobe

far away from where she might have heard
his voice or seen him turn as she spoke
but he did and he did and she did and
she sat as he got up to stand then she stood

to undress to lie stiff as if cold
on the left half of her mattress so he lay
his back flat his head pressed hard to his pillow
with his right hand hanging down from the edge

to forget is to rest to remember is to regain
contours clear or barely out of focus
by gazing into undetermined space
solitary silent an activity


Parking lots are vacant.
Birds are flocks or
caught in flight.
Bellies heave or are
soft and white and heavy.
Once a decision is made
there is always time left.
Between a shopping cart
and the car in which
the shopping goes
one pavement cracks,
several noisy babies,
divorces undecided as
of yet, dinner in plastic
dinner served from
plastic. As long as things
are just for now, but how
long is that. If the
homeless person had
spoken you would
have taken his words
for wise. for what reason
did both of you return
the other’s smile.
Don’t buy his paper
if what you want is
to break your bill
for the soda machine.
The other ideas remain
within the lot’s confines.
They dissipate and multiply
and the parking’s concrete is
not much different in the end
some thoughts are acted on
sometimes awaited actions done.


All you say in the sunlight. Your day to arrange

with the small wooden bench and the trees and the
joggers. The smile that you smile at the warmth of
the breeze on

your face. That you run to catch out of breath and
keep smiling because you know you could not go
any faster. When you open your mouth in the wind
and you

breathe in and out against it. So you stop and you
laugh in the air without sound and you say in the
sun. Arrange your day on the small wooden bench
in the

park where an old lady sits on Sunday. Every week
you imagine that she waits there for a disappeared
man. He has left

long ago, before you were born. She was not there
today, is it Sunday. Would she want you to sit. You
sit down.


1. to me! the horseback general

2. from the man in his mercy seat, no sound.
death upon his body a fascinating vacuum

3. pick me. the antepenultimate boy then
the last boy, after all he is not a team player

4. somebody loves you. the evangelist girl big
brown eyed, had forced her card upon him
now crumpled in his open palm, he remembered

5. you’re a winner! shaking his daily fist at the morning
mirror to make the affirmation last until this evening too

6. no words from her who sits to peel skin
from her own body. she does feel something

1. forget. the general resigns descends leads
horse away from army and raging battle