February 1st sees the London launch of literary magazine Five Dials’ 41st issue, How Can This be Possible? A Survey of Dutch Writing, introducing English-language readers to authors not yet established in translation and showcasing the entertaining, moving and haunting voices of the finest young authors writing in Dutch today.
The Dutch issue, guest edited by author Philip Huff and designed by Visual Editions, includes work from Lynn Berger, Hanna Bervoets, Thijs de Boer, Thomas Heerma van Voss, Philip Huff, Dutch poet laureate Ester Naomi Perquin, Nina Polak, Mustafa Stitou, Maartje Wortel and Niña Weijers, with artwork from Iris Le Rütte and some graphic imaginings from Studio Joost Grootens.
The texts were translated by Jonathan Reeder, Erica Moore, Liz Waters, David Colmer, Vivien D. Glass, Alice Tetley-Paul, Sarah Welling and Michele Hutchison, with funding from the Dutch Foundation for Literature. The texts range from poetry and fiction to an intriguing insight into the world of independent literary publishing in the Netherlands, with a friendly mention of Ons Erfdeel.
On my back I carried the coffin in which my father lay.
Bent low by its weight, I staggered forward step by step.
My pace slowed, the burden was too great, it was beyond
me. Carefully I lowered myself full-length to the ground,
slid out from under the coffin, raised the lid without
hesitating and whispered, Father, I can’t carry you. I’m
sorry. Could you maybe walk a little?
Five Dials is published by Hamish Hamilton, an imprint of Penguin Books. Past issues have presented work from both emerging and established talents, aiming to reach readers all over the world, with past issues launching from cities such as Montreal, Paris, Cork, Brooklyn, Berlin and Sydney.