VSB Prize Jury’s report about ‘Koelkastlicht’ (Fridge Light’), Rodaan Al Galidi (published by Jurgen Maas, 2016)
It is cold in these poems. Rodaan Al Galidi’s collection ‘Koelkastlicht’ is the quiet cry of despair of a human being who, against his better judgement, bravely tries to do the most difficult thing of all: to live. There rises a solitary voice, trying to smile beyond the grimace of loneliness and wanting to keep alive a belief in peaceful coexistence with one’s self. And then there is humanity, which really needs to be rescued and which never stops bothering the human being. We may well believe that we can laugh about these verses and the poet will not gainsay us. But these delicate poems have frozen the most naked feelings in language as clear and sharp as icicles. ‘Koelkastlicht’ is brave in its subject matter and honesty.