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Space to ask new questions, to doubt, to reconsider assumptions

The Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences, is one of the oldest Advanced Study Institutes in Europe committed to promoting interdisciplinary and curiosity-driven research for established and early career scholars. It is an intellectual haven where scholars, artists, writers and journalists come together in an interdisciplinary and collaborative environment.

persian rose garden


How the tree-shadows cross the lawn
ambling, encircling, never stopping. Standing
still like a beech among bushes. The will
to grow is a Law: of living, but what

do we know of the birds that nestle between leaves
and branches within us? Is there tender
happiness ready to hatch? It strains
to emerge here where the sun’s slanting rays embrace us.

Between us eggshells drop
to the earth. To ken the seasons
is as impossible as bearing the crown:

do you feel our heart flexing with each gust of wind?
Getting used to the renewed every morning.
Endure. A storm is brewing. Do not fail.

Poem by Maria van Daalen, written in celebration of NIAS’ 40th anniversary in 2011.

*Translation by Maria van Daalen and Petry A. Kievit-Tyson



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