Brief bio sketch

Lloyd Haft (1946- ) was born in Sheboygan, Wisconsin USA and lived as a boy in Wisconsin, Louisiana and Kansas. In 1968 he graduated from Harvard College and went to Leiden, The Netherlands for graduate study in Chinese (M. A. 1973, Ph. D. 1981). From 1973 to 2004 he taught Chinese language and literature, mostly poetry, at Leiden. His sinological publications include Pien Chih-lin: A Study in Modern Chinese Poetry (1983/2011; published in Chinese translation as 发现卞之琳: 一位西方学者的探索之旅 in 2010) and Zhou Mengdie’s Poetry of Consciousness (2006). His most recent book, a liberal modern Dutch reading of Laozi's Daode jing, was published as Lau-tze's vele wegen by Synthese in September 2017.



He has translated extensively into English from the Dutch of Herman Gorter and Willem Hussem, and from the Chinese of various poets including Lo Fu, Yang Lingye, Bian Zhilin and Zhou Mengdie.



Since the 1980s he has also been active as a poet writing in Dutch and English. He was awarded the Jan Campert Prize for his 1993 bilingual volume Atlantis and the Ida Gerhardt Prize for his 2003 Dutch free-verse readings of the Psalms (republished by Uitgeverij Vesuvius in 2011). His newer poems are published (some republished) on this blog.



After early retirement in 2004, for a number of years Lloyd Haft spent much of his time in Taiwan with his wife Katie Su. In addition to writing and translating, his interests include Song-dynasty philosophy and taiji quan. He sings in the choir of a Roman Catholic church of the Eastern Rite in The Hague.



Friday, June 17, 2011

Naar Psalmen 20, 27


(1) Naar Psalm 20

Moge die mij ziet
mij nu ook horen,
nu dag nog is –
ik benauwd,
hij als altijd verborgen.
Niet in zijn hoge bergen,
niet verborgen is mijn hart maar hier,
in 't nu, in 't nauw.
Ik roep u nu,
ik heb u nodig hier.


(2) Naar Psalm 27

Mijn vrees zij u tot licht:
mijn beven de kracht van uw verschijnen.
Als door een macht omsingeld
wacht mijn hart, alleen.
Eén ding heb ik verlangd:
dat in mijn ogen
uw schoonheid worde gelezen.
Moge u binnen de muren van mijn benauwdheid
uw inwoning vinden
en in mijn blinde speuren
het schijnsel van uw heiligdom.
Moge u in mijn roepen
uw naam horen.
Zoals ik naar uw aangezicht uitzie:
zie toch op mij.
Ik zou allang zijn bezweken
maar zo groot is mijn hoop:
dat u mij nog ziet bij mijn leven.

--Lloyd Haft (uit De Psalmen in de bewerking van Lloyd Haft, Querido 2003; herdruk Uitgeverij Vesuvius 2011)