<

THE FOOL

in the new year, I wanted to unload myself of the idea that I'm only allowed to exist
if I've put in enough hours

that unloading was consummated by throwing a Taiwanese wishing bean
into the Amstel where it flows out of the city

I tried everything
in my mind I had a baby
             that would change the course

I acquired the words of a new language
             through close-ups of beautiful and less beautiful teeth
             until my Spanish teacher, who earns a bit extra
             by giving tarot readings after the lesson and calls me the lighthouse
             because I live in the future (even my torso
             arrives everywhere faster than my legs
             can manage) had to tell me
             that with my oral characteristics
             it would be impossible for me to ever roll a rrr
             and Hyunhak Yoon, who'd stickered himself into Ted
             because it was easier for everyone but him
             to remember, reassured me that in South Korea
             your worth is measured by whether you've had your frenum snipped

I applied for an allotment

but I drew the Fool, she says:

you used to be a nun who lived on landscapes
today, you're as free as you let yourself be

teach your hands that they're allowed to lie fallow from time to time
see how the sea rushes as wind through the trees
trees that bring wind to your face
where, by breathing in and out, a mouth
causes a minor vortex






ORIGINAL: de dwaas

FROM: VELDWERK, 2020 (QUERIDO, AMSTERDAM)

TRANSLATED BY ROSALIND BUCK

FOR POETRY INTERNATIONAL 2021