Prince Henrik’s latest collection of self-penned poetry in French and Danish is being pounced on by reviewers like a Michael Bay film or Justin Beiber CD.
“Old wine in new bottles” sneered one critic. “Perfume poetry” dismissed another.
‘In My Happy Nights’ (I mine lykkelige nætter) is the royal scribe`s seventh collection. He pens his oeuvre in French and provides Danish translations for his loyal Danish fans, none of whom seem to be literary reviewers.
Translator Niels Lyngsøs decided to translate the Prince’s work without rhyme, robbing the words of well, poetry, according to the naysayers.
“Absolutely correct and proper, but hopelessly pointless and boring without rhyme,” wrote Weekendavisen newspaper.
"An organ grinder’s monkey"
Jyllands- Posten reviewer Lars Skinnebach called the Prince’s work “poems that imitate poetry because they appear to be linguistic, but they contain no surprising images and no reflections beyond the mediocre”.
Skinnebach concluded that Henrik’s contribution to the arts was no more original than the work of an organ grinder’s monkey.
Ekstra Bladet’s Frank Sebastian Hansen said that Queen Margrethe's contribution to the book – six delicate watercolors – contained more poetry than all of the poems combined
“Pompous and perfumed language full of moth-eaten metaphors and shrill alliteration,” Hansen concluded.
Berlingske’s Jørgen Johansen was a bit kinder, giving the collection three out of six stars and praising the prince’s "solid craftsmanship”.