Poets in Utrecht


“When was it that first time I heard of the grass harp? Long before the autumn we lived in the China tree; an earlier autumn, then; and of course it was Dolly who told me, no one else would have known to call it that, a grass harp.

Do you hear? That is the grass harp, always telling a story – it knows the stories of all the people on the hill, of all the people who ever lived, and when we are dead it will tell ours, too.” – Capote –

Ruben’s voice trails off into my dreams, a melange of the surreal and the tangible. Days are spent drinking soy milk out of the box, wearing suspenders under our vests with hobo hats by our side.  The conversation turns quickly to poetry, good books, great books, that one most amazing book of all time… Other people come and join us, up in the attic, surrounded by old antiques and musty blankets. Grabbing papers off the shelves and reading passages to each other, the morning turns to night, hours fly off into the dust.

I feel so at home looking at their faces, the romance sparkling in their eyes, the glow of youth so apparent, the war, the love, the fight. We’re all so comfortable in our skins, so open and receptive to one another. Nothing extraordinary happens, nothing particularly exhilarating… but I feel so content. And here, here right now, appreciating these people and these words. When our eyes grow too heavy, we lie next to each other in bed, reciting the broken bits of poetry etched into our memories and slowly fall asleep, smiles playing on our lips.


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