The Manhattan Review
The Manhattan Review
Established 1980

Archive > Vol. 15 no. 1


Toon Tellegen

“A man found an angel...”

Translated from the Dutch by Judith Wilkinson


A man found an angel, in some out of the way place,
let’s fight, said the man,
good, said the angel

the man fought with him,
gained a victory over him,
tore him apart,
swept him up, threw him away,
scrubbed the floor
               until there wasn’t a trace of him left,
rubbed his hands
and stopped thinking about him

and the angel smiled
and lifted the man up, between two fingers,
looked at him with surprise
               and some emotion too,
dropped him into an abyss

and the man fell and fell,
thinking that he was walking
and that it was summer
and that his future was full of promise.