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The space of a total experience

Now is Already too Late

Erik Spinoy

Erik Spinoy constructs his collections with great care, dividing them meticulously into sections and cycles that reinforce his treatment of themes. He rediscovers himself time and again, like a snake shedding its skin. His new book ‘Now is Already too Late’ is no different in this respect, and at the same time it is.

A poet like no other
NRC Handelsblad

Since the language of the grandmother first made its appearance in the poems in ‘Wicked Wolves’ (2002), Spinoy has increasingly focused on the workings of discourses and the way that through identification and distance they construct an identity. The idea that ‘la langue me parle’ (‘the language speaks me’) is always close. In ’I, and Other Poems’ and in ‘Soundproof Room’ that technique is explored repeatedly through characters, statements and practices, those of the world of a forensic pathologist, for example, or of an artist such as Ann Veronica Janssen. In 'Now is Already too Late', this way of working is taken to its ultimate extreme in a magnificent manner.

Spinoy is classical, and a classic

‘Now is Already too Late’ is a patchwork of quoted and adapted discourses, collected from the history of art, music, international and Dutch-language poetry, film and philosophy, but also discourses about the two world wars and the crimes against humanity committed in them, advertising and marketing, psychology of the kind found in the weekend supplements of newspapers, and bits of text from ordinary parochial Flemish-Catholic life, with its pilgrimages and its IJzertoren.