Dreams by Julia Knobloch

In an old warehouse by a shipyard I was looking
for something half forbidden, half prerequisite.
It didn’t seem to matter anymore if time was limited.
I saw endless elevator shafts, empty studios
drenched in spring light,
loopholes in the walls and hidden stairways,
until I found you standing in the center of a darkened loft.
You just stood there, waiting? You looked at me.
And I began to slowly walk around you.
But I had never danced your dances,
I had never sung your songs!
Was it not far too early, for a dream like this?

The buses were yellow and all the man wore black.
You wore black too, if faded, and belonged
although you didn’t.
The men glanced at us while we cut through their crowd,
marching side by side yet separately.
I was not dressed appropriately.
The park was packed, green, and humid.
Under a lavish tree, a bride in long-sleeved silk posed
with her groom, whose smile seemed warm and colorful.
I didn’t want to stare too long.
Behind the baseball fields, a couple on a blanket
watched their little daughter teeter on the grass.
I wondered if your young parents used to sit there, too.
You didn’t say. I didn’t ask.

Another dream: Way up north, I boarded a ship
bound to sail nonstop to the isles
in the frigid Land of Fire.
A fog horn blared, anchor chains rattled.
Restless inside the moving hull,
beset with feelings of urgency and fear,
I reached through an open porthole and
scratched a message into lucent glacial ice.
I knew that giving is an act of loving
and that in silence, I gave a lot –
yet wished I had not missed the time
nor lacked the poise to say out loud:
Three words, one name.

And then I woke.

Julia Knobloch is a journalist and translator turned project manager and executive assistant. Before moving to New York from Berlin, she worked 10+ years as a writer and producer for TV documentaries and radio features. Her essays and reportage have been published in print and online publications in Germany, Argentina, and the US (openDemocracy, Brooklyn Rail, Reality Sandwich), and she occasionally blogs for ReformJudaism.org. An emerging poet, she recently was awarded the Poem of the Year prize from Brooklyn Poets for her poem Daylight Saving Time.

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