And Jesus wrote in the Sand

Jesus wrote with his finger in the sand. He stooped down low to write in the sand. We do not know just what he wrote. He himself knew not: engrossed in the words that came from his hand. From scribes and scholars he had got the third degree about somebody’s wife (obsessed by another man,…

Foetus

This is life’s core, secure and satisfied; inside a woman close together grow two eyes and then two ears in turn and so two cheeks are measured out and side by side sustain a nose, and then a mouth’s begun. The blood, that dark and inbuilt firebrand, keeps all its shooting tendrils close at hand…

‘Cast off the names that others had applied’

On the Poet Gerrit Achterberg The ‘repulsive oeuvre of a dangerous psychopath’ or ‘the Netherlands’ greatest poet’: Gerrit Achterberg (1905-1962) is undoubtedly the most controversial figure in twentieth-century poetry. A hundred years after his birth he is still either acclaimed or reviled, as was apparent once again in the responses to the new edition of…

Two Poems

Charlady She knows the underneath of wardrobe and of bed, rough wooden floorboards and forgotten nooks, and crawling forward on all fours she looks less like a human than a quadruped. Her life to lower surfaces is wed; she toils away to beautify their looks for feet of grocers, preachers, men of books, since rank…