Monday, 25 May 2009

Wislawa Szymborska

In Praise of Dreams

In my dreams
I paint like Vermeer van Delft.

I speak fluent Greek
and not only with the living.

I drive a car
which obeys me.

I am talented,
I write long, great poems. 
I hear voices,
no less than the major saints.

You would be amazed
at my virtuosity on the piano.

I float through the air as is proper,
that is, all by myself.

Falling from the roof
I can softly land on green grass.

I don't find it hard
to breathe under water.

I can't complain:
I've succeeded in discovering Atlantis.

I'm delighted that just before dying
I always manage to wake.

Right after the outbreak of war
I turn over on my favourite side.

I am but need not be
a child of my time.

A few years ago
I saw two suns.

And the day before yesterday a penguin
With the utmost clarity.


  1. Hi Friko,
    This is great! Reminds me of Thurber's Walter Mitty story. I think daydreaming is fun! It also allows one's creative side to explore and have free-rein. I would love to see a penguin (and then put him in a poem). GO for it! Love, Margaret

  2. Friko, Wislawa Szymborska is one of my favourite poets! There are few people who know her, despite the fact that she got the Nobel prize.

  3. I like to visit second-hand bookstores and I have a list of books to look for – Szymborska’s Book of Poems has been one of them for a while, but I have not found it yet. Next week I’ll be in Alaska, but I kind of doubt that there are too many second-hand bookstores over there. I enjoyed reading her poem on your post.

  4. Margaret, Francessa and Vagabonde, what an erudite lot I have chosen as blogging buddies! In my ordinary, daily life I hardly ever meet anybody who follows my flights of poetic and literary fancy. Thanks, ladies.

  5. Thank you. Have to admit I don't know this poet so I'm glad you brought this poem to my attention. Enjoyed it!

  6. A remarkable poem by a poet that I am not aware of (Francessa's correct). Thank you for introducing her to me!


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