PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
Most Read... Rebecca WattsThe Cult of the Noble Amateur
(PN Review 239)
Mark FordLetters And So It Goes
Letters from Young Mr Grace
(aka John Ashbery)

(PN Review 239)
Henry Kingon Toby Martinez de las Rivas
(PN Review 244)
Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Vahni CapildeoOn Judging Prizes, & Reading More than Six Really Good Books
(PN Review 237)
Tim Parksin conversation with Natalia Ginzburg
(PN Review 49)
Next Issue Subha Mukherji Dying and Living with De la Mare Carl Phillips Fall Colors and other poems Alex Wylie The Bureaucratic Sublime: on the secret joys of contemporary poetry Marilyn Hacker Montpeyroux Sonnets David Herman Memories of Raymond Williams
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
PNR 250 Poetry Archive Banner
PN Review New Issue

This poem is taken from PN Review 261, Volume 48 Number 1, September - October 2021.

Two Poems (translated by Judith Wilkinson) Roelof Ten Napel
Translated by Judith Wilkinson


they tell you a friend is going to die. they know
you can help, they’ve seen your hands,
what they brought forth.
on purpose you leave too late, this body
must make a point. you arrive at the grave
and though you knew what was to come, and what will come,

you weep.
get to know us.

even what heals hurts, even what rises from the dead
is missed, we know by now that something always
stays behind.

the problem is that you are good, and we aren’t,
that you arranged it that way. we are
a fish put in a puddle –

it’s a cruel man, surely,
who stands beside it

Searching, please wait... animated waiting image