Thursday, December 15, 2005

Hay(na)ku in Dutch

Tom Beckett writes about his obsession with the form Hay(na)ku . I have to confess to developing an obsession for hay(na)ku too.

I think what makes this form so appealing is how it lends the writer wings and allows a person ( like me) to transcend barriers of language. I found myself entering spaces I'd stopped dreaming of, like this space of writing something in Dutch. My first effort...years ago...put a temporary stop to any writing because I imagined that my inability to write in Dutch meant I would never be able to write anything worth reading anyway.


I've really been obsessing about hay(na)ku and wrote this Dutch hay(na)ku that put a smile on my hubby's face and made him say: Yes, it is a good poem.


Mijn Nederlander
(my "Nederlander"/dutchman)

Nederland (Netherlands
was koud (was cold
maar vol magie. (filled with magic

Op’t eerste gezicht ( at first sight
was ik ( I knew
verliefd. ( love

Lege ( empty
velden ontroerden (fields moved
mij. Ik dacht, ( me. I thought,

Hier ( here
zal ik ( I shall
altijd blijven wonen ( make my home

Eerste impressies vervagen ( first impressions fade
We vergeten. ( We forget.
Eerste ( First

passie ( passion
wordt gewoon. ( becomes common.
Steeds moet ik ( I must always

onthouden ( remember
waarom ik ( why I
jou had gekozen ( chose you out

van alle mensen ( of all people
ter wereld ( in the
vond ( world,

ik ( you
jou het ( were the
allerliefst, mijn Nederlander. ( sweetest, my Nederlander

Toch blijf ik ( even so I
voor altijd( remain always
Allochtoon. ( foreigner


The Dutch version is more poetic than the English, which is a first for me. Thanks to The Chatelaine for bringing this form into the world.

As my son says, "Hay(na)ku Talaga!"


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