Albert Hagenaars

Gaudily flagged and with the greasy
sounds of her only language, Antwerp
receives he who enters in city heat.

When I push through this façade
of freight containers, cranes and quays,
in a fury inherited from all our fathers,

she appears only to be a village’s teeth,
rotting in a gnawed off throat on the Scheldt,
that still clatter around rusting billboards.

It’s against older signs that she ignites
my zeal: under vaulted arches,
rustling brocade. In bleeding lace.

Albert Hagenaars, (translation: Catherine East)
From the collection CURFEW
WEL-Publications, 2000.

Main Location:

Antwerp, Belgium