i should have told this story
only to one being—only to her.
my head against the windowpane, bowed, staring at
the gray morning—my back to the room—
i was saying—i had a dream last night.
(and i tried to describe to her the unknown boulevard
of monumental façades, excessively ornamented,
and the lights there in the night.)
but at the time i spoke, the daylight was
wintry, and dreams no longer mattered.
when i turned toward the room, to hear her response,
i felt tired. it was as if i’d stopped at the corner
of an unknown street, with the inexplicable certainty
that just a little farther, if i walked ahead a few steps,
a tiny square would open up, with the plash of a lazy fountain
and, at the far end, a staircase i could keep watch on
from here at the corner, though i’m never to try climbing it.
(she once said to him, i know that he must imagine
he needs nothing more than my being
to be capable of living for real. then she spoke of something else.
she was simply repeating what i’d told her one night,
clutching her inert hand.)
Translated from the Romanian by Adam J. Sorkin with