Friday, September 23, 2005

The poet as a young man

Idoville, Circa 1986.

Drawing by Nick Simpson of the cocky, young writer at 23 in his the living room at 'Idoville', the home he shared with his mother in Wynberg, Cape Town.


He looked

Above his head

Staring in disbelief

at the halo.

What have I done

to deserve this?

and then he remembered he remembered the thin




that he had fed.

Claus Andrup

First published in NEW NATION October 1971, Pretoria, Republic of South Africa


I do not see a land in turmoil; a land of sinners or sinned by. I see no west, nor south, nor east nor north. There is no gold in my vision. No sea routes, no tradition, no international consequence. The only history I understand is my meagre, three decades. Suffering in every texture, hue and name remains a mystery to me. There is no aim in my view; the barrel of my gun swings wild in the debate. My sights are sightless; senses, senseless; need, needless. For me there is no terrotory, boundary, fence, limit, or horizon. All parties seem guilty and guiltless at one and the same time.

I do not see a land in turmoil. There is no gold in my vision. There is no aim in my view. The barrel swings wild in the debate. For me, for now, there is no territory. My only desire is to feel, once again, the sand of the two coasts beneath my feet. And the colour of the corpses will fade beyond recognition, in time.

CA 1976 (unpublished)

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