Despite the geologists’ knowledge and craft,
mocking magnets, graphs, and maps—
in a split second the dream
piles before us mountains as stony
as real life.
And since mountains, then valleys, plains
with perfect infrastructures.
Without engineers, contractors, workers,
bulldozers, diggers, or supplies—
raging highways, instant bridges,
thickly populated pop-up cities.
Without directors, megaphones, and cameramen—
crowds knowing exactly when to frighten us
and when to vanish.
Without architects deft in their craft,
without carpenters, bricklayers, concrete pourers—
on the path a sudden house just like a toy,
and in it vast halls that echo with our steps
and walls constructed out of solid air.
Not just the scale, it’s also the precision—
a specific watch, an entire fly,
on the table a cloth with cross-stitched flowers,
a bitten apple with teeth marks.
And we—unlike circus acrobats,
conjurers, wizards, and hypnotists—
can fly unfledged,
we light dark tunnels with our eyes,
we wax eloquent in unknown tongues,
talking not with just anyone, but with the dead.
And as a bonus, despite our own freedom,
the choices of our heart, our tastes,
we’re swept away
by amorous yearnings for—
and the alarm clock rings.
So what can they tell us, the writers of dream books,
the scholars of oneiric signs and omens,
the doctors with couches for analyses—
if anything fits,
and for one reason only,
that in our dreamings,
in their shadowings and gleamings,
in their multiplings, inconceivablings,
in their haphazardings and widescatterings
at times even a clear-cut meaning
may slip through.
Wislawa Szymborska's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Dreams by Wislawa Szymborska )
- 1 [Tears] (Neverending Poetry - Personal.., Lenny Orlando Camacho
- You're The Best..., Almedia Knight Oliver
- Only In My Dreams (Regional Korea), Ronald Chapman
- Being Realistic, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Countless tears., Marcondes Pereira
- Unrest Soul: Dark minds, Onyekachukwu Vincent Onyeche
- me &the dragon, gordon nosworthy
- A Free Mind, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Dissolved, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Go boothward young doves, moez meftah
Poem of the Day
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- Nothing Gold Can Stay, Robert Frost
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- Acquainted with the Night, Robert Frost
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
(30 October 1885 – 1 November 1972)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
William Butler Yeats
(13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)