the first word you taught me was distance
because that is how we measure the world
because that is how we place each other
because that is where you exist from me.
Next to your distance I wanted to know
the word for proximity - NABIJHEID, you told -
because for how far you are, I want to know how close
you could get.
Wednesday's lesson was this:
JE, JIJ, JOU, JOUW
all words for 'you' (the loveliest pronoun)
and MEISJE is the word for girl
and this word I recognized because
I am more MEISJE than VROUW.
"what did you learn today?" you asked
when your day started and mine was ending.
IK HEB ZOVEEL TE LEREN
yes, so much to learn. And so soon,
and look, the day was over.
I woke up and you were gone
as if a dream, as if kindreds -
VERWANTEN - only comes
in sleep and slumber
as if the blossoms of Amsterdam
had spilled off the trees
and live only in the world
where there is no distance, just
the proximity of you next to me.