to the other side

I was given ‘carte blanche’.

As sometimes happens when flow arises
it took me to too extreme.
There is a hunch for knowing what’s right.
This was ‘over’,
I knew.

I decided to show it anyway.
As part of the process
of making the book we were working on.

‘How about an exhibition?
Would you like that?’
I was asked as a reaction.*

I said yes, instantly.
Instantly I knew a story.
Instantly I was deeply honoured.
Instantly at the same time
excited and scared.
Big time.
The venue is impressive.
Never done a solo exhibition before.

During the dark times,
a few lines had become my mantra.

Heb die viool al mijn vingers nog
en een jas
Buiten is het feest
_ Herman van Veen

Still got that violin all my fingers
and a coat
It’s party time outside

Those words I held on to.
It became the start of
telling my story at that time.
A story of resilience and hope.

I unraffeled my story
through Hermans words.
His words and songs
are always close,
bringing comfort and hope.
Connected memories to his words.
Layer by layer,
stripping down,
to the core of the story to tell.
Until personal becomes universal.
Building it up again by
turning the story into graphic images.

The venue.
The wonderful place
that is the heritage of Herman van Veen.
For decades a world I may be part of.
He gave words to my story.
A gift so precious
I’m still lost for words.
Besides deepest gratitude.

There was even a picture taken.
For promotion.

I think this series of graphic poetry
would have made my teacher proud.
I can hear his voice
‘Akkie, kat in het bakkie.’
(Akkie, it’s in the bag)

Nature was already back before.
Together with posters, poetry and a book
all seated together front row.

Getting the story and graphics out
felt deeply vulnerable.
Without knowing at that time,
this got me to the other side.