Every week, my great grandfather the respectable owner of Kjærgaardsholm drove from Nors to the shallows of Jutland, then sailed from Aalborg to Copenhagen leaving his wife to manage three sons, a daughter, servants and farmhands. He drove around in his big Vauxhall van, opened cattle shows, met with dignitaries and laborer’s, spoke to a thousand-fold audience in his booming Danish dialect. (He also drove a lady about in his big van, but that was something he didn’t talk about.) He’d a snub nose which he acquired as a boy because he was always walking with his hands in his pockets hardly surprising then, as his mother Maren Katrine commented that he went and tripped over the doorstep, and yet there was something about that flattened appendage – its smoothness perhaps, or childish innocence that gave him a handle on influence and power, won over hearts, allowed him to get away with so much. He lies in the family grave in Nors, still the maximum achiever of power in the family.
(Translated by Peter Graarup Westergaard/Mary-Jane Holmes)
You can buy ‘Danish Northwest – Hygge Poems from the Outskirts” here: https://www.troubador.co.uk/bookshop/poetry-short-stories-and-plays/danish-northwest/