A chill, a touch of blue and two days gone by. Thursday noon in the Permeke library in Antwerp, a captivating author in his own right Johan de Boose and Marleen de Crée held a very interesting conversation. I have known Marleen's work since over 30 years and the talent of the interviewer dug out some interesting information and insights new to me. It must be challenging and wonderful to be interviewed by someone who knows "the metier", the necessary skills as well as the interviewee. Then the answers can open new perspectives. When one listens to Marleen it all seems so logical and as it is supposed to be. This isn't quite the right formulation since she is also strong willed and has an original mind of her own. All this packet in the beauty of the sonnets and rondeau's. The perverts, changes these traditional forms: strange punctuation, no rhymes, no open lines... You name it, she has done it. I now also know how the musicality of her verses came about. She went to a good boarding school where they had a choir. She had a very high soprano voice and so she sang in the choir. Their school won most contest because of this soprano voice. At home too there was a lot of singing, and many books. She started reading the books on the top shelf and worked her way through all the books. One could say that was her classical period. She adores Proust's A la recherche du temps perdu and all the poetry by Rainer Marie Rilke. She would joyfully reread them, but so little time, so many books to read and write. Here you find 3 wonderful video-poems made with Marleen's poems, a happy collaboration with Swoon Bildos who is invited to many Video festivals to showcase his work. This is the very first poem by Marleen I read in my translaton authorized by Marleen:
I tell you, Plinius, it is September
poets turn in the tide.
fruit ripens on warm walls,
don’t forget: these are the last hours
of summer. warmth, nothing can happen still.
it are the quiet days of the year,
because more patiently all is carried
in multiples of the last gestation.
September knows what fondness means
and love draws shadows of wax.
I say: once prudence was calculated
by the outline of a water glass.
the grapes, Plinius, the last trestles
of what a poet’s summer was.