Secret Agent
Tonnus Oosterhof (b. 1953)
Translated from the Dutch by
Alissa Valles
I took care of everything: the alias
the hotel where no one would look for us.
His muscle, his being short and taciturn,
his smooth brown soles were my idea,

The calm with which he did what he did
to force a confession out of me.
Shock, ice-cocktail, bamboo, false hope:
he was a master in the third degree.

When I left I'd sworn to what he wanted.
I had killed, betrayed and lied,
and ranted more than he had ever heard
and agreed: our meeting never happened.

--- From New European Poets
Wayne Miller
Kevin Prufer, Editors
©2008, Graywolf Press
Send us e-mail


Go Home

Go to the most recent RALPH