Windesheimers write poems about Corona

Twenty students and employees wrote poems for the poetry week at Windesheim. A lot of them contained emotional expressions about the current Corona-period. 

The Windesheimers wrote the poems as part of the national poetry week (28th of January until 3rd of February 2021). They were compiled by ART@WIN, a network for art within the education at Windesheim. The theme for the poetry week this year is ‘Together’.

It doesn’t come as a surprise that the theme ‘Together’ led to a lot of poetry about how writers are feeling during this lockdown, in which they miss being together with their family and friends.

Parents

An example is found in the poem by lecturer José Fietje of the Human Resource Management study programme. She wrote hers with her parents in mind. “When I saw the call-up from the poetry week, the theme spoke to me to such an extent that I immediately started writing.” Fietje dedicated the poem to both her parents but the poem is directed towards one person to give more of an effect.

“I haven’t been able to hug my parents for a long time now and I really miss that. I can’t console them in hard times and can’t kiss them for those memorable moments.” Fietje gave words to that feeling of missing out in her poem, which she hopes people can identify with and be touched by.

Has she written poetry before? Fietje: “To be honest, I normally only write poetry for Saint Nicolas or Christmas time. In those poems I make jokes about my family or reflect on the past year. But now I wrote a very serious poem. It is special because up until now, I have only written lines that rhymed.”

Together

What if together,
Isn’t really together anymore
Because an embrace
Is too much
Can’t put my hand
On your shoulder
Can’t place a kiss
On your cheek
My heart feels heavy
Longing for physical contact gnaws at me
How I would like to hold you in my arms
Because then once more we’d be
Together

Design

ART@WIN asked two students from the Communication study programme, Rianne in ’t Hout and Barbara Dames, to come up with a fitting presentation and format for all the poems that were submitted (as far as writers themselves had not done this). Rianne made the design for the poem written by José Fietje. 

Estranged

Amara Dusan, a first-year-student of the Educational Management Childcare study programme, wrote a poem about the estranged relationship between being ‘alone’ and ‘together’ in this corona period. Amara: “The poem flowed from my fingers when I heard that Windesheim was organizing this and the theme was ‘Together’. My heart cries for everyone who has been hit hard by this crisis.”

She struggles with the slogan ‘Only together can we get corona under control.’ “Because I feel that we are even less connected and more divided, it seems we are more alone. We wear a mouth-mask, stay at a meter and a half distance from each other. We are alone within being ‘Together’. That is where the title of my poem comes from.

Love and respect

How does Amara struggle through this difficult time? “Whatever your opinion is about this crisis, don’t try to make it your reality. Stay open with love and respect for one another.”

She designed the format for her poem herself: a black piece of paper written on with a white pencil with a mouth-mask above it. 

Alone “TOGETHER”

The empty streets
Rinsed glasses
Closed doors
Open windows
The warmth that grew cold
The distance that got longer
My hands brutally disinfected
My mouth covered
And my heart heavier
Trapped in a space

“TOGETHER” alone

Working from home

Journalism lecturer Niek Hietbrink wrote a poem about working from home through Microsoft Teams.

Dear colleague
I see your bright smile
Like a hundred lights in a Christmas tree
It’s the ideal world
We compromise
We help each other when it’s needed

But apart from that
We have fun with others
With whom
We now form a circle

It’s all keeping up appearances
The photo is a screenshot
And your image frozen
Your laugh is but a moment
The Christmas tree a background
From Teams, that co-operative corporation
For the lonely incompetent
There’s no Christmas tree
Nor am I there in the room with you

Let’s only for a short while
Laughingly pretend
But afterwards never again…

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