composed on Spiegelrei
na bezoek aan Kopje T.

An afternoon with nothing to do,
all obligations laid to rest.
No bosses to please, no haikus to write,
and not a complaint on your chest.

How, in a city like Brugge,
with her busily peopled squares
can one simply let one’s hair down
and escape from worldly cares?

There’s plenty to see on the market,
there are human statues galore.
If lucky, you won’t be run over
coming out of your own front door.

Aha! I have found an answer
to this imperative need for peace:
sit down on the steps of a mansion
(in sunshine) for instant release.

Take your notebook out of your pocket
and scribble whatever you like,
draw a sketch of a dreamy canal
or a schoolboy pedalling his bike.

By now you’re a different person,
you see things the Japanese way.
Go back to the café you came from,
tell the waitress you’re feeling OK.