A man plays clarinet in Vondelpark In snatches– a soft, playful, mournful dirge, Marrying the merry with the dark.
Its weeping laugh, the ambivalent mark Of my old tribe– I feel my spirit surge To hear some man play clarinet in Vondelpark.
I love his instrument, its human spark: Breath transformed, emotions dance and merge, Marrying the merry with the dark.
Amidst the blackbird’s song and yorkie’s bark, Jerusalem and Athens here converge When a man plays clarinet in Vondelpark:
Both peoples have this tragic sense– this stark And plaintive sound which says: light will emerge By marrying the merry with the dark.
Nature is not enough. No loon or lark Can satisfy our spiritual urge. A man plays clarinet in Vondelpark, Marrying the merry with the dark.