It is with great sadness and shock that we have to announce that the eminent Dutch poet Menno Wigman passed away suddenly yesterday in Amsterdam. He was just 51.
Menno Wigman’s prizewinning poetry combines a return to traditional forms – tight rhythm and full or half-rhyme – with a modern, big-city bite that goes to the heart of the turn-of-our-century human condition. This gained him not only enormous respect from his peers, critics and editors, but also popularity among a wider poetry-loving public.
On the PoetTrio project we had the privilege of working with Menno Wigman during our translation workshops. He was one of the three Dutch poets who co-translated their UK counterparts’ work into Dutch, and whose work was translated into English.
The rest of the team of poets, translators and researchers remember with affection his quiet, quizzical insights. And not only the energy of his own poems, but also the tight, incisive poetic skill that he brought to bear while translating. We will miss him enormously.
Menno Wigman has one published volume in English: Window-cleaner Sees Paintings, translated by David Colmer (Arc Press). Poetry International Web hosts an English-language selection of his work, translated by John Irons. Here is a video of Menno reading after our workshops in Newcastle last July.