Skip to main content
Writing is getting rid of

Sculptures. A choise from the works

Roland Jooris

In 1978 Roland Jooris produced an interim ‘selected poems’, ‘Gedichten 1958-78’. A striking feature of this selection is that hardly any of the poems from his earlier collections are included. This was probably because Jooris’s style gradually changed. The early poems often have a light tone. Gradually the light nonchalant tone in Jooris’s poetry disappears and it becomes more severe. The world moves increasingly out of the frame; more and more frequently the poems are about poetry itself. In his poetic work too Jooris has often turned to the world of the arts for inspiration.

He crosses out a space for himself
Herman de Coninck

The fact that language, unlike music and the visual arts, automatically has meaning, would appear to be a problematic issue for Jooris, and one that he has increasingly attempted to come to terms with.  What appealed to Jooris then was the ephemeral and the potential of poetry to draw attention to something that normally passes barely heeded. Jooris has virtually always been a poet of few words, but apparently fewer still is an option for him, and his new work is ever more sober. This evolution in his work continues. Jooris writes as a sculptor works, with every blow being well-aimed and deliberate; the unwritten page and silence are as precious as marble. On the other hand a subtle play with sounds asserts itself in the same words and this would seem to be the all-embracing factor in Jooris’s poetry. Drifting in the spacious white of the page, the words would seem to have gone hopelessly astray, but for the fine musicality of the whole that binds them.

The poems in ‘Sculptures’ have been selected by the poet himself. The volume is the perfect introduction to his comparatively modest oeuvre.