If I only knew the way
This is what I might say...
Give me a little more time
before the circus begins.
the clamor, the crowds
the crush, the rush.
I'm here.
It's me.
Get up, sit down, feel free.
But I need attention, can't you see?
I'm dazzled,
I'm dizzy,
and going back is an impossibility.
When I'm fast asleep,
my feet like to peep
from under the blanket,
light and warmth all around.
Dear world, please let me tread
on solid ground.
When I was alone, I didn't know it.
Now, when you leave my room,
and close the door behind you
I think I can see
the difference
between ‘you' and ‘me'.
How strange.
To suddenly sleep in the light
For nine months I never knew
What's a day and when is night.
When did I dream my first dream?
When will a nightmare make me scream?
These are the questions that fill my head,
for my entire world is now just a bed.
Day and night -
Night and day -
When does one come
and the other go away?
Now I dream of you
and you dream of me
Nine months we dreamt as one
a single entity.
Mom, you're so new
different, yet the same.
How will I remember,
what it was before I came?
Pumpkin -
Dumpling -
Sweet Pea -
My pretty little lady -
And of course the name you gave me.
Leave me alone now,
if you'd be so kind.
For I've got other things on my mind.
I'll spend a third of my life
So many straight promises
you spread around me!
If you sleep, you'll grow tall,
a foot, and that's not all.
I scrunch up my face.
What a waste!
So many day and weeks
spent between the sheets.
You pushed and pulled
pinched and patted
just to hear me scream.
My first lesson in how to survive:
If I cry- I'm alive.
Now I'm all snug and warm,
gathering strength after the storm.
Getting some rest
between one siege and the next.
I don't know it all -
that may be so -
but it's all I really need to know.
You've surrounded me with creatures
furry and smooth.
I feel their silky softness,
but they never move.
How nice of you, how kind.
But why didn't you leave me
a living friend behind?
I know you by your smell, Mom
your velvet voice,
your tender touch,
the caress of your breath,
the warmth only you possess.
It isn't true that I cannot yet see.
This is how I want the world to be,
half in shadow, half in light,
misty and pristine,
like a diaper of pure white.
You try so hard to understand whether I'm hot or cold, happy or sad. The baby's wet with sweat,
he's frozen, he's shivering.
Or he's rocking himself to sleep,
not really quivering.
You want life to proceed without a hitch,
to solve all problems with the flick of a switch.
I'd like to help out, but what can I do?
The workings of my mind are a mystery to you.
I love.
Even if I still can't say it.
Just because I lie here in silence
Doesn't mean I don't care.
I love
Believe me - I'm aware.
Don't push me to grow up,
there's no big rush.
I've got time enough.
When will another opportunity arise
to spend a whole day in bed,
to dream and fantasize?
Bubbles everywhere,
floating on air,
in the sweet aftermath
of a bath.
I hereby declare
from my cocoon of silky white cloth,
Here lies a person without a care.
Hands off.
Whatever you become,
you'll be the best one,
second to none.
They entreat me,
so impatient, so needy.
Just wait and see what you can do,
all the people will adore you,
you'll be the one they turn to,
and who knows,
maybe you'll win a Nobel Prize or two.
You'll have everything we missed out on.
Oh darn!
So many dreams to realize,
I should have been born a hundred times.
You always say this -
Sometimes you say that -
How wonderful life is
The world is so great
Please don't teach me
How to lie or hate.
First I crawl
then I stand tall
trying to get used to it all.
Now that I'm up here, for all to see,
I'd like to know
why everything's rocking
but me?
If I had known
what was in store
I would have been filled with fear.
But nonetheless, and in spite of it all,
I'm oh so glad to be here.
It doesn't matter
if the blanket is thick or thin
or the light is shining above
just wrap me up
in lots of love.
This is a picture of me
as once I used to be.
It's all locked in memory,
that's what you said to me.
But if my mind's eye grows weak
I can always take a peek
in this book and say,
that cutie pie
with the toothless grin
and the dimpled chin
is me!
Translated by Sondra Silverston



Nava Semel, Age 2


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