with Lize Spit & Thomas Gunzig

An octopus has three hearts:
one for birth, one for life, one for death.
The soft oval body envelops
everything it needs.

One human heart attempts to think
of yesterday, today, and tomorrow,
but the head doesn’t listen.
Through the ossicles we learn that
many things in nature occur in threes:
you, me and your ego in a ménage à trois.

We overreach.
As in a wild ocean
we move in three dimensions,
while trying to prove a fourth.

There is no escaping
the flames behind the gate
of Cerberus, each head one of the Brontë sisters.

For us too, as fragile animals
and if one after the other stays silent,
the night falls on the bottom of the sea.

This is a translation of a poem I wrote for a competition. The first and final two lines were given by author-and-poets Lize Spit and Thomas Gunzig. The original poem in Dutch can be found on the Flirt Flamand website.


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  1. SelmaMartin Avatar

    Lovely. Great feature poet. I like 😊 XoXo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. SelmaMartin Avatar

    Lovely poem. Truly enjoyable. Found it through mitchteemley’s reblog. 👏

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Constance Bourg Avatar
      Constance Bourg

      Thank you Selma! I appreciate that.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. mitchteemley Avatar

    Reblogged this on Mitch Teemley and commented:
    My Featured Blogger this week is Constance (Conny) Bourg of Tender Rebellion. Conny is a poet, essayist and digital collage artist who lives on the Flemish coast of Belgium. Her work is sometimes direct and sometimes cryptic, but always completely engrossing. Read on and you’ll see!


  4. Hobbo Avatar

    A beautiful translation. I love the idea of everything being in threes.

    Liked by 2 people

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