Poetry Writings Artwork and stories from Neil Furby

Sep 28, 2010 at 01:20 o\clock


The wardrobe’s bare no skeletons no bread
Passed down from my dark ancestor a mirror dating from her birth
Like a giant Moses basket right about to leave
Inside if the whole crap ship goes up in sudden flames.

What a drunken boat the wardrobe is if suddenly recalled to the blue red black sea far away – 
Unfolded sheets all sails unfurled
And history’s hoodwinked ghosts –
You lean out, life
Towards what infinite and what forgetfulness. 

The moths have eaten the sheep’s wool
Oh come on
If gold’s worth less than coal
Let’s saw it saw it down!

My great-great-auntie threw herself under a train for love
The heart I never knew of her
Can’t straighten out inside the personal affairs
Of your existence at a visit atavistic auntie
On the station platform or the tube the RER for me.

The unsealed furniture has lost its handkerchief
Its biscuit crumbs all read its roll-necks full of holes its lousy fichus scarves
A ledge what prow if you’re all washed up and perch there awed
Not a single bird is left to whistle in this wood.

She’s sinking the heavy wardrobe made of short memory and solid oak
Her shelves and thinginess
Her rail paralysis
Her mirror exactness
In her prettiest dress she’s dancing she’s sixteen.

It was long ago an angel passing now
(The bridal wardrobe sent to make a blaze as soon as my late aunt claire
Buried without corsets and eyes.)

Sep 28, 2010 at 01:09 o\clock

Love letters by J. SLAUERHOFF

Love letters surpass a lover who’s gone.
Once the letters have arrived, it’s quite enough:
For they’ll be yours forever, while it’s odds on
Your love will leave bankrupt or in a huff.

Day or night it’s there for you to see
Whenever you have the missive near;
You let its tender radiance appear,
Read every word, think to yourself: that’s me!

Women change – texts, written, change no more.
Though one laughs sagely or bitterly weeps
When contemplating foolish words of yore.

But if I could, I’d brave both sands and deeps,
Forever strive fresh wadis and ports to reach,
If I could be sure of a letter in each.

Sep 28, 2010 at 01:07 o\clock

LETTERS AT THE SEA by J. Slauerhoff


They're read and read repeatedly,
Though readers sensed already what was there,
Woven of one cloth, whatever tongue it be,
And in the long run all equally threadbare.

Still, unfolded again, after their lonely meals,
At night on watch, in bunks, once tales are told;
For those who've fought their solitary ordeals,
Such characters nourish as they did of old.

Between ‘my dearest' and ‘yours ever' there can be
But one theme - kids, isle, village homes they own -
Which only weddings, births and deaths rephrase.

After so long on board, it seems as if a haze
Shrouds what they know on land, they are alone,
One with the ship, consorting with the sea.        

© 1998, Erven J. Slauerhoff / K. Lekkerkerker / Uitgeverij Nijgh & Van Ditmar