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Ester Naomi Perquin

The Netherlands

©Tessa Posthuma de Boer

Poet of the Fatherland Ester Naomi Perquin (1980) is back again this year to present the Night of Poetry. Perquin made her début in 2007 with the poetry collection Servetten halfstok (Napkins Half-Mast) and she has since published three more collections. She received the Herman de Coninck Poetry Prize for her latest release Meervoudig afwezig (Absent Many Ways). Her work is characterised by accessibility. In an interview with NRC, she said, “Sometimes it seems to be a literary venereal disease. When you are at primary school, poetry is still natural and marvellous, before questions are asked about the poet’s meaning. I want to build a bridge between poetry for children and for adults. The seemingly simple appeals to me.” Lange armen (Long Arms) was published this year, which is a collection she wrote as the Poet of the Fatherland after she had spent a few months with the Dutch National Police Corps. In addition to poems, Perquin also writes essays and short stories. She was the columnist for De Groene Amsterdammer magazine for many years.

“The poetic genius of Ester Naomi Perquin (1980) has broad, powerful wings. With an open attitude and sharp mind, Perquin shines new light on real-life situations. Her poems often make observations about loneliness and alienation.” Janita Monna in Trouw.