Dichter fan Fryslân

Poet of Fryslân

Eeltsje Hettinga

Malta – the Assassinated Day

‘There are crooks everywhere you look now,
the situation is desperate.’ Journalist
Daphne Caruana Galizia (1964-2017), murdered
not far from Valletta, Leeuwarden’s dark sister city.



Under a moon full-grown and white
like a wild potato gone mad,

a man sits, half in darkness,
alone and smoking on his veranda,

floor strewn with advertising,
newspapers and brochures about temples

and cities and five-star hotels.
But grim is the news driven

by the machinery of death, the island
lays bare its whitewashed tombs.

A single bomb blew a car almost
over the mountains and left the tongue

that made life hell for Malta’s mafia
dead and charred. Like crows

the potato sacks took wing over hills
closely planted with seed potatoes from

Het Bildt. Ai, watch your back, Jack,
now night has fallen in Europe.

In the valley of death they torched the word
the way they once slid books into the flames.



Translation: David Colmer



Poet of Fryslân

The Poet of Fryslân writes six to ten poems a year, and knows how to reach and tie to an audience with his poetry. The poems are highly preferred in the Frisian language or in a Frisian regional language.

The Poet of Fryslân acts as a poetic ambassador and takes care of Fryslân’s poetic representation in a modern and inviting manner. Inside and outside the province. Preferably inspired by actual events or special moments that occur in our province. The Poet of Fryslân knows, in a contemporary and accessible way, how to present current and social themes in poetry.

The Poet of Fryslân is expected to perform a number of times a year on yet to be determined occasions.

Eeltsje Hettinga

Eeltsje Hettinga has been elected the first ever Poet of Fryslân. The appointment is for two years. Deputy Sietske Poepjes will appoint the Poet of Fryslân on November 24, 2017 in the Herman Gorterkerk in Balk.

As the Poet of Fryslân, Hettinga acts as a poetic ambassador over the next two years. He writes six to ten poems a year, most inspired by striking and current events in the province. The Poet of Fryslân receives a fixed fee of € 2,500, – per year and € 250, – for each poem.