Chameleon Nachtroer by Charlotte Van den Broeck, translation: David Colmer
(Bloodaxe Books, February 2020, 64 pages.)
Her first English translation combines her debut volume with her second book Nachtroer (2017), its untranslatable title the name of all-night shop in Antwerp where she lives.
Chameleon is a set of apparently naïve but knowingly ironic, playful and subversive poems which trace a girl’s search for a woman’s identity, a coming-of-age exploration of body and language drawing on memories, shapes and landscapes. In Nachtroer, her poems take a nighttime journey through heartbreak, insomnia and the hectic flow of daily life, driven by a desire for disappearance, displacement and dissolution.