Featured Poem

The Flight


The floodgates by the sea are open,
the land retreats silently
gurgling into the reeds and rolls
backwards to the river bank.

They are running and leaping.
They swim against time and tide.
Their muzzles crest the water line,
their eyes black and flashing.

Next they leap ashore
hurrying onward, ever on,
the banks of death fading behind them.
Pelts and claws are drying out.

Far off and faint in their ears
there’s still a roar; then silence falls
in their hammering hearts.


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About the translation:
Poet:
Stefan Hertmans
Translator:
Donald Gardner
Original language:
Dutch, Flemish
Issue:
2014 Number 3 - The Singing of the Scythe

About the author

Original poet

Stefan Hertmans

STEFAN HERTMANS is a major figure in contemporary Flemish literature. His award-winning novel, War and Turpentine, featuring h...

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Translator

Donald Gardner

DONALD GARDNER’s most recent book of poetry is The Wolf Inside (Hearing Eye, 2014). His collection of Remco Campert’s poetry,...

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