Translator's notes

Showing and Tripping

By Anne Vegter

Vegter’s work has been described as tumultuous, humorous, trite, incoherent, playful, unpredictable and vulgar. Her poems emerge from and inhabit that incongruous space between everyday distractions (getting dressed in the morning, commuting to work, a lunch break, cooking dinner, doing the dishes, etc.) and the bigger ‘what, how and why’ questions of life.

Vegter’s poems are not so much landscapes as thoughtscapes and although that might not be a word, it was certainly a useful way of thinking about her poems when it came to translating them. The poems are an invitation to engage with the world on her terms. Her stylized handling of Dutch language and syntax makes her descriptions of the everyday simultaneously estranging and intimate. Where the English could not (yet) accommodate, I improvised.

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