Television drama about the tragedy of drink is set in the grey, disconsolate factory town of Zaandam. The protagonist is Henk van de Wal, a down-and-out poet and alcoholic who cannot settle down in life. Excessive drinking has given him the Disease of Clairvoyance. He sees through people with an intelligent sharpness, but does not dare to be himself. Always in search of love and continuously hunting brief ecstasies he loses himself in drink. In Zaanse nachten, we follow him on the last days of his life. The film is a musical narration with music by Ray Anderson and Chet Baker among others.