Tuesday, April 2, 2019

ZBIGNIEW HERBERT - “Dream Language”

when I sleep
like everyone
before dawn rises
I wind the clock

I sink on a white
waves wash me
from the white ship
I look for keys
I kill a dragon
which laughs
I light a lamp
but above all
I chatter

I suspect that
we all dream in images
but I spin
all these crazy yarns
as if sleeping
in a mound
of narrative

but that is what
dream language
should be like
a fine language
with a long arm
it flouts grammar
phonetic principles
a language of mockery
a language I don’t know

when I sleep
in the cat’s place
the bronze body
is pierced by a shudder
we moan like a melody

when I sleep
in the cat’s place
sometimes my body
is pierced by a shudder
a melody like a moan
audible to the ear

at such times
dream language
closes itself off
of weariness

a language of sweet dread

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