Wat schrijf je.



Ja ik weet dat ik niet wit of grijs ben. Nee ik heb daar geen problemen mee.


In het openbaar schrijven leidt soms tot vragen.

dus ik schreef een gedichtje ter antwoord, dat er

in iedergeval 1 verantwoord deelbaar ding in mijn boekje staat

misschien schrijf ik hem vanaf nu in al mijn boekjes,

zodat ik altijd een antwoord bij de and heb op ‘wat schrijf je’


Wat schrijf je?

Mijn dagboek

mijn lief leed leuk

en lekker dramatisch

dagboek. mijn het

komt nooit meer goed

en het leven is prachtig

woorden, verhalen en

plaatjes boek.

Misschien is dat het

antwoordt dat je zoekt?


Trauma worth writing about

And as we stood outside looking at each other with a

‘what the hell just happened’ face I said: this is going to be

a ‘great’ story. And she said. yeah. You might really

need to write this one out of your system.

And although being fearful of a scared cat that acts

seriously violent -is a tellable story, most of them aren’t

and even when the story is funny, the feelings you felt

when it happened are not. How do stories work

when talking, telling and writing about things seems impossible?


the dark lines seem like the ones in our minds, but the silver lining however small gives hope.


Love story

Saturday the sun shone, and I was thankful to be where I am.

The beauty mostly left me speechless. So I’ll share the pictures I took to show you how much I love this place.



Clearing out the mess

As I prepared to clean up the trash, all the

mess of things that are left

around the house of left by the owner

before and by us. I’m met with a beauty

unexpected, an attachment previously

less detected. The mess is so beautiful

I can hardly imagine to throw it.

I try not to be less attached to people than things

but isn’t it wonderful, to see the beauty in everything?

and I took some photo’s, that do not do justice

to the beauty that I saw. but they are a witness to

my love.



Re-reading Jonah


Blurryness of where we are sometimes

In my ‘line of work’ or at least my academic discipline, when there is a question, a mystery, you will just keep on looking what is there but maybe hidden in an object, and at the same time you gather different sources that might help you understand what you see, as well as you mentally and physically  reconstruct what is now only traces of history. This morning, although the academic mystery that I am currently researching is not yet solved, I have another mystery begging for some answer. As with any kind of research I formulated a question that might not get me to the ‘right’ answer but will help me on my way- this question prompted because I was in a strange space of mind and time. The question was: God, how can it be that telling one story, is such a big deal? Obviously I considered other reasons than the storytelling for my current state of strangeness- lack of sleep- time of the month- time of the year- spring leaves me breathless rather than restless… but these were all factors that were both beyond my control ánd in my bones- since I cannot get rid of my bones that easily, and do not control the time of year, another more answerable question came to mind to direct the research: What was that one story that I told?

Soon, I realized there were multiple layers to what I had told- easily enough I figured I actually told 2 stories,  my version of the book of Jonah, and my view of the book in a form of a poem. I decided to go to the book of Jonah to see what it was about, to actually understand why this story and telling it might have touched me.  It is interesting when you tell a story by heart, how much you change- telling the story of Jonah, I kept the main things, the boat, the storm, the fish, Nineveh, de tree, and Gods answer. Yet some details, not in the least because I forgot them, I did not explore, while other aspects that are hardly mentioned in the book I elaborated on because  I could make jokes about them, or because they seemed to make the story more interesting.

In between the formulation of the research question and the reading of the story in one of the many bibles that are in our house I was reading up on the ‘8’ on the Enneagram- the ‘boss’ type that  controls situations or people because he or she does not like to be controlled- and of whom one of the main expressions and emotions are anger and frustration. Reading the story side by side with the Enneagram I saw that Jonah had quite some ‘eightness’ about him. He did not enjoy to be told by God what to do so he made his own plan to hide, to control the situation, but at the same time, he knows when it’s time to stop- and lets himself get thrown overboard. what happens next is that he goes on to Nineveh, and Nineveh repents.  One of the things I love the most and in a way lies in line with my view of the 8 type character is when Jonah gets upset with Gods decision to save Nineveh- and he says to God: Well… no surprise here.. you know what, I knew that this would happen when I was still in my country, that was why I fled on the boat because Iknow that you have pity, and mercy and you are patient and rich in love and you are always prone to regret the doom you have placed over someone.  And then, because Jonah is a bit of a drama queen he says: you can take away my breath because right now, I love death more than life. It is marvelous to see how upset Jonah gets because of seeing God being loving and kind and merciful and seeing him come back on his promise of doom. But this actually makes sense when you look at Jonah with the eight number on the enneagram- love, kindness, mercy is all weakness that the eight tries to avoid. God’s reaction to Jonah’s anger and his disapproval of his goodness is precious: ‘Is there really a reason to be so upset?’  we get no answer from Jonah, but interestingly enough he does take his time to stick around and watch what will happen to the city. And this is when God uses Jonah’s passion ‘against him’ or rather to broaden his horizon. He gives Jonah a tree to be in the shade and to calm him down a bit- yet in the night the tree dies and being on the east side of the city the sun rises and Jonah soon finds out that he lost his precious tree. Just as well there is a terrible wind that makes Jonah so depressed he once again longs to die. And he tells god: I now love death more than life. God asks once again: Do you really think there is a reason to be so angry about this tree? and Jonah answer is simple and passionate: Yes, I have all reason to be unreasonably angry about losing this tree. God now has Jonah where he needs him to be to listen- filled with his passion and acceptance of the anger over the loss of a simple tree- but God calls it something else than anger. He says- ‘you are caring deeply for that tree‘ I wonder what the look on Jonah’s face and the feeling in his heart were, seeing his anger for what it was- not just selfish anger but the sadness of the loss of something beautiful. That anger was actually a very vulnerable emotion. Now having jonah know that caring deeply about something can completely mess you up to the point of wanting to die, he continues his  awnser: so you felt that storngly about a tree, that you did not plant, that you did not take care of, a tree that bloomed and died in the night – would I then not, care deeply about this gigantic cityof nineve wher there are so many poeple more than thousands and thousands, people that don’t even know the difference between left and right, and all the animals?

The book stops here and I think that is good, I think after that day Jonah was a broken man. Not because God saved the city, but because realized that he was not so different than the God he so despised for being weak, and he himself is just a man had no way of feeling secure in power as the almighty might have. In my poem about Jonah I find myself an even more cowardliness man than Jonah- where Jonah still had the passion to run from a God he thought to be too merciful, I would have gone with that God, but always on a distance- would I be broken down and moved beyond the point of turning back at the answer God had for the angry Jonah? In a way reading the story of Jonah did was different than the way I told the story a few days ago, yet it helps me to understand and accept where I am now. What the story of Jonah taught me today is that it is not a terrible thing to be overtaken by emotions and to let things play out, angry or not- this is where God talks, and speaks, and shows himself, in the mirror.

Afraid of the water


Even the puddles scare me these days.

For so long, I’ve been afraid of the water

If I was Jonah I wouldn’t get on that boat

Hell no, I’d go to Nineve.

Tell strangers of doom and God’s salvation,

His story, not mine anyway.


If I was Jonah, I wouldn’t have gone to that boat.

And in the end- I would have learned,

How God is good for a city, a stranger, the one who repents

But never

That he will send a fish,

when I deserve being thrown out of the boat

or rather when I jump, simply give up.

My God won’t let me drown.

I told a story.


The jittery beauty of lights and water and under a bridge at night

So I gave up the night, and in truth, most of the day

because only now at 11.21 I’m out of bed and ready for breakfast.

yesterday was one of these tired days where you know sleeping won’t

help. you might as well wander the city, or in my case, cycle another 24 km

(there and back again) to the Mezrab. It was open night again,

like the first time I went.

So the way that works is that there are 2 times 3 storytellers,

that already applied beforehand, and then there is a ‘free’ slot,

with one know storyteller, and 2 names are drawn from the hat.

You know how it goes, one of the storytellers says :

live your life running looking death in the eye, and put your name in the hat. 

And so I did.


Male club, church, enterprise, social advancement- I hope not. falling up, The meaning of life

It included

All the awkward hanging at the bar waiting for the guy in charge of the hat

to come by, the whole jittery feeling in your blood, the heaviness in your bones

the copying your poem to actually makes sure it’s readable.

and then the break ends. And some woman draws a name from the hat.

and it’s mine. And so I tell the story of Jonah, and what would have happened if I was Jonah.

It was nice being able to tell a wonderful old story the way I wanted to and to share one of my poems. It felt strange but right.

But mostly it is interesting how it feels that nothing has changed and at the same time that  I moved on to the next part. Whatever that is.


Whatever it is.

Black swan

There was a man,


At night, around the corner with the red light.

and since he was holding

a camera with a big lens

I knew -he was standing

still with a purpose.

Because a lens or an

aimed pair of eyes,

tell you there’s something to see


And for me, this was the moment

to check if I did not just

see something wasn’t there

but actually something that

shouldn’t be there.


But it was. I saw something impossible

They live on the other side of the

world right?

And as i told the story i almost

wondered if i made it up.

but sleep deprived as i was

going home it was there once again

and then I captured it-

while it warned me-

the lights, the road blocks

and the special spiecies.


almost looks fake right?



in de bibliotheek



This is not a book but a story all the same. 

En even als het net


nog geen tijd is om terug

te gaan naar de boeken,

schrijf ik. Wiebel ik woorden.

Ik freubel met letters liever

dan met ideeën of gevoelens.

Want mijn ideeën staan in de steigers

en mijn gevoel laat ik

even wachten in het

wit tusssen de regels.

later als ik die tussenregels

verzamel en kijk, zal ik

misschien weten wat

mijn hart op de witregels

tussen andermans woorden


Hijack my feelings

Won’t you just go on,

Hijack my feelings

my thoughts and ideas

if I am soluble enough to


Walking on your own.

share them.

I don’t want to fight

over what you think

that might be different

than what I feel


and oh here I am again-

I didn’t need you to tell me right

from wrong I was just curious

And oh here I am again-

I did not stop you from talking

but I don’t appreciate you walking

all over me again.


In the small space between

not the time or the place

I find myself back on track knowing

who I am once again.


And in the small space between

stepping out and rushing in

I can hear my thoughts

once again.