Rooster / Distance

Rooster / Distance


In his black eyes flicker
the chip towns of the future.

At night the reign of terror swings
through the grab bag of the run,
a quizmaster without prizes
with always the right answer:

Kukeleku. The world perishes.
The world is going down. Kukeleku.



What they can make of that, these days.
World cities are built from distance,
relationships maintained from distance.

Oppressive are worlds of ideology without distance.
Annoying are the distance-killing glasses of love.

New life, I yearn for. Life against sameness.
Give me the terraced houses of the stars
that stand winking far away in their glass
conservatories thanks to distance!

And you are reading this, thanks to, right, repetition
the most distant form of love.


Nothing has ever been written about many of my poems. I got many reviews, but they usually picked poems from the book that were precisely not my favourites. I found that curious, apparently you could differ in opinion about the strength of a particular poem. The poem Distance was picked out by the jury of some prize, and that’s a nice philosophical poem, as a lot of my poems are philosophical by nature, which is probably why they don’t appeal to some people. They require reflection, and the presence of a reflective circuit.

I am afraid that much of the twentieth century presented itself as ‘progress’ but, on the brain front, actually showed a darting decline that presented itself as a convulsive mode of normality. You know the types, they pretend to be experts at soccer and write completely uninteresting poetry about their tupperware. In Dutch-language poetry, people were asleep in the chair and such types have taken over en masse. Campert, Kopland, and the cynical jeans-Sjakie Rob Schouten still sitting on his faux-religious throne: the consensus is in the iron grip of the normalo, and I’ve been trying to pry it loose from that for all my life.

Probably a futile project, I know. The enemy has a big advantage: the lie and the system are proudly on his side. Mediocrity should be hung with garlands and celebrated as the highest. Yes, my poem Rooster is about the gatekeepers and their chiptowns of the future.

By their shhhroom shall ye know them

M.H.H. Benders is a most recognised poet of his generation, a student of the universal mycelia,  Amanita Sage and mycotherapist. He wrote seventeen books, the last ones at the Kaneelfabriek.

He is currently working on the second volume of the SHHHHHHROOM series of books about mushrooms and the Microdose Bible, which is an activation plan to restore your true identity coming next year. Keep in touch!

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