Wednesday, June 8, 2016

The Purple Crate

Suddenly I couldn’t make out what the child was saying.  We had been chatting about groceries and grocery containers. I held a purple folding crate, obviously a fascinating apparition, between my hands which I was using in place of a grocery basket; my intention was to cart my groceries off back to the office that morning in that very same crate. I informed the young blond girl that I didn’t understand what she’d last said.  She looked up at me unfazed and I could see the snot bubble flex in her left nostril.  She repeated her information.  I felt hopeless and powerless in front of a small child, we had mutually failed the medium of verbal communication.  Her father turned around. “Those,” he explained pointing to the contents of the wooden push trolley manipulated by the child, “are named Pluk and Lekker Ding.” Pluk and Lekker Ding were a bit tired looking, and had their short doggy paws linked around each other in the bed of the push trolley.

That a small child should lisp at me Lekker Ding (“hey sexy” in some situations but also more innocently translated as “great piece of stuff”), in the supermarket line was a tad startling. The supermarket cashier with the fringe of brightly colored hair (every week a new color to brighten her life - it’s her brand of life) tucked a packet of the bonus item, some cards, into the girl’s trolley. “And don’t tell papa,” she instructed.

“Papa,” the child inspected the cards, “look what I got.”


Pray Tell:

I thought June would be a quiet month filled with me nosing about the musical scores I need to prepare for next year. I get to bark “Wow, wow wow” in a piece for instance (in a program called Alice Music in Wonderland) for a lighthearted English language program about Lewis Carroll and his texts. Annemarie and I practiced this once in a villa in Hilversum one afternoon with a loquacious pianist. The ensemble seemed to work well at the first try, could I run a variation around this wow wow wow theme? Or these days I could shake apart the Magnificat that landed out of the blue on my piano, which is the incredible saga of three composers and Duo Annemarie and Persephone.  The Three Composer Saga goes like this:

(Start of board game)


A friend invited me to a concert out in a polder near Woerden behind some small factory, the trees were in full blossom.


Two years ago

Sunny day

Enlightened music

Modern chandelier

Upon modern ceiling


Asked composer kindly

New piece for violin and voice

Received part of piece

A year ago

And then….



Annemarie & Contact

Composer, young


Based on Bach

Poem by Abbott

Yes he scribbles

The wait begins




In Stedelijk Museum

Asked for dinner


Schubert she sings

Gretchen am Spinnrade

In a too low key

Accompanied on piano

By short composer


First part


Voice and violin together

Arrives in mail

Two months later

Meeting, three parts more

In a grove in Watergang

Music Festival

Beautiful weather.


We are now arranging the premiere of one, two or three pieces: Pluk, Lekker Ding, and Maria.




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