The Sound of Hands: Ruke by Croatia’s Darko Rundek

© Cradel with CCLicense
© Cradel with CCLicense

Congratulations are due to Croatia, welcomed this week as the 28th member of the European Union after ten years of working and waiting. A sovereign nation for a little more than two decades (1991) and a rapidly developing economy, her place in the EU will create movement across borders that will be both helpful and challenging to herself and Europe. The old ways will change; that is always a bittersweet process where some will gain and others will lose.

Darko Rundek is a singer, composer, director, poet, and actor from Croatia who has lived in France since 1991. He became famous as the lead singer for the band Haustor. His solo albums, recorded with various musicians from all over the globe, are Ruke (Hands), Apokalipso (Apocalypso), U širokom svijetu (In a Wide World), MHM A-HA OH YEAH DA-DA, and Plavi avion (Blue Airplane).

The following video for Ruke was made in 2004, at a time when accession to the EU looked as if it would be blocked. It speaks for a culture that feels frozen, unable to move forward, fearing betrayal at every turn. This is enhanced through the creation of a stop motion landscape in which furniture and objects have a life of their own, illustrating the feeling of being haunted and hemmed in by things beyond control.

We trust that 2013 and the coming years will see new days and new vistas for Croatia, although the wounds of civil war do not fade quickly. Best wishes for peace and prosperity, may no one forget your journey.

Video via observe2see on YouTube.


This morning
You forgot everything
That kept you together
This day that’s knocking on the window
Is not yours
Is not yours

Things are silent around you
Your bed and table are watching you
in silence
Trifles hanging on the walls
Just to be rough
In the shadows of those
Times of
You suspect a betrayal


C’mon let me play for you
The soul dies in silence
And don’t fear the noise
What you hear playing
Are hands

Translation via

Leave a Reply