Holland as I remember it

Editorial note: If you have not yet read our mission statement above, please do so in order that you can put our blogs in context. 

2 December 2013

Herinnering aan Holland

Denkend aan Holland

zie ik brede rivieren

traag door oneindig

laagland gaan,

rijen ondenkbaar

ijle populieren

als hoge pluimen

aan den einder staan;

en in de geweldige

ruimte verzonken

de boerderijen

verspreid door het land,

boomgroepen, dorpen,

geknotte torens,

kerken en olmen

in een groots verband.

de lucht hangt er laag

en de zon wordt er langzaam

in grijze veelkleurige

dampen gesmoord,

en in alle gewesten

wordt de stem van het water

met zijn eeuwige rampen

gevreesd en gehoord.



Holland as I remember it

Thinking of Holland

I see broad rivers

flowing slowly

through unending plains,

lines of unimaginably

thin poplars

like lofty plumes

mark the horizon;

and, sunk in this enormous

 space,  farmhouses

strewn over the land,

clumps of trees , hamlets,

truncated towers, churches

and elms  – all

majestically interrelated.

the sky hangs low and slowly

the sun is smothered

in grey multi-coloured mists

and everywhere the

voice of the water with its

ceaseless calamities is feared

and harkened to.


Painterly impressionist poem by Dutch writer Hendrik Marsman (1899-1940) from his collection “Poëzie” published in 1938. Marsman is referring not to the whole of the Netherlands but rather to the former Dutch coastal province of Holland, now split into North Holland and South Holland.


 You might perhaps care to view some of our earlier posts.  For instance:

1. Why? or How? That is the question (3 Jan 2012)

2. Partitocracy v. Democracy (20 July 2012)

3. The shoddiest possible goods at the highest possible prices (2 Feb 2012)

4. Capitalism in practice  (4 July 2012) 

5.Ladder  (21 June 2012)

 6. A tale of two cities (1)  (6 June 2012)

 7. A tale of two cities (2)  (7 June 2012)

 8. Where’s the beef? Ontology and tinned meat (31 Jan 2012)

Every so often we shall change this sample of previously published posts.


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