on a bonobo and a chimpanzee

did artist yoko bonobo
completely out of mikado
construct for hiroshige's lobster
`jacuzzi with yakuza mobster'?

the ape clams up mysteriously 
but still complains imperiously
`they never take me seriously'

chimp saatchi: `who knows? years ago
she built in downtown tokyo
her christ in tub with giorgio
committing in this spirito
artistic harachirico'

utagawa hiroshige, 2 shrimp and a lobster

Utagawa Hiroshige, 2 shrimp and a lobster


Giorgio de Chirico, Christ and the storm

Giorgio de Chirico, Christ and the storm


Giorgio de Chirico</a>, mystery and melancholy of a street

Giorgio de Chirico, mystery and melancholy of a street


Yoko Ono, touch me

Yoko Ono, touch me


Yoko Ono: once partner of John Lennon, Bonobo: great ape; jacuzzi: warmwater whirlpool; yakuza: japanese mafia, mobster: mafioso, Charles Saatchi: owner of Saatchi Gallery, harakiri: ritual japanese suicide

For this Trijntje Fop the following New York Times article on Giorgio de Chirico is useful. There is also a beautiful essay on de Chirico by Robert Hughes.


This page is about my hommage to visual art and nature: a magnus opus of around 180 Trijntje Fop poems (after Kees Stip), mostly in Dutch. The project does not remain entirely unnoticed: a detailed reference to these poems has been included in Poets on Painting (2010), by Robert D. Denham.

Trijntje Fopkunst: a hommage and a gesamtkunstwerk. Over 100 illustrated light poems with a well-known artist or artwork as clou, fittingly illustrated. This collection of illustrated poems is a tribute to all the artists which inspire and have inspired me over the years. There is just one in English, see above. (Incidentally the Dutch ones are probably better, but it gives a taste).

Other trijntjes: over 50 light animal poems, with animal illustrations. There is also just one in English, see here below.

The project is taking up a lot of effort and time. On the blog trijntje fop gaat op de schop I'm working on a complete revision of all the poems. All new poems are posted there. At the same time I'm enriching the poems with illustrations, links and background information. Perhaps the blog is a better place to visit at this moment. Over the time to come I will put up the revisions and new poems on this website as well.

Trijntje Fop iis a nom de plume of the Dutch poet Kees Stip (1913-2001). The name is currently used to describe light poetry with the following style characteristics:

  1. light!
  2. see rule 1
  3. about 1 or more animals (`on a ...' ) with typical human characteristics - as in De La Fontaine's work.
  4. abundance of spoonerisms
  5. 2 to ... lines, mostly 6 in aabbcc form.

The original Trijntje Fop poems of Kees Stip are quite strict in their form, with 8 to 9 syllables per line and no deviations from the aabbcc vorm. Almost always 6 lines, but sometimes 4 or 8. My own poems are strict in form as well, but the form varies more than with Kees Stip. My edeavour is to lift the genre to another level, through the combination of clever language and generous visual material.

The name Trijntje Fop itself is taken from Multatuli (nom de plume of Eduard Douwes Dekker), from his magistral Ideas. When will these be translated in English? I'm flabbergasted to be unable to locate a translation. Here is a link to a commented, wonderful complete online edition of Multatuli's Ideas in Dutch by philosopher Maarten Maartensz.

In one of the continuing stories (between Ideas) master Pennewip reads and comments on poems of his school children. One of them is Trijntje Fop, with a short and very simple verse:


Tryntje Fop, op haar muts

Ik heet Tryntje Fop
En heb een muts op myn kop.


Tryntje Fop, on her cap

Tryntje Fop my name is said
and I have a cap on my head.


Pennewip's commentary on this poem (and that of Trijntjes classmates) is very memorable, see Idea 385. Multatuli was a great language modernizer, whose style still comes across as modern. In my poems I try to retain that modernizing spirit.


on a polar bear

a bear in alaska:
`i feel i must ask a

cool shrink a wee question
about my depression:

is it simply contextual,
just possibly sexual

or down to my solar share
that i'm a bipolar bear?'

bipolar bear

polar bear with depression


The (bi)polar bear pun is counted by Google as 32.900 hits...mixed feelings therefore about this trijntje because the clou is not quite original. But well, anyway, originality isn't what it used to be...

Here a funny piece on bipolar bears on uncyclopedia

Serious info on bipolar disorder can also be seen in Stephen Fry's `Secret life of the manic depressive'.



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Images and texts © Franka Waaldijk 1982-2019, unless otherwise indicated. If properly attributed, sharing on social media (including websites and blogs) is permitted for personal non-commercial non-political purposes. A possible exception is formed by pictures of art work by artists not having died over 70 years ago. These pictures are incorporated here under `fair use' but that is not automatically transferable. Click for privacy policy.

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