It’s a dream that never comes to me:
there is no blossoming chestnut tree,
no garden of rioting summer blooms,
not even a house with empty rooms. 
My childhood garden has no calm,
no mother to rock me in her arms.
Because it was so long ago,  
I search for it with heart of woe.

There never was a meadow path,
no smiling eyes or tinkling laugh;
no mother, garden, house or tree,
no dreams remain to comfort me.

Only a singed moth’s final flight 
into the dwindling candlelight, 
its fuzzy corpse a dream forlorn
twirling into dreamless dawn.

Kim M. Russell, 10th January 2023

Blossoming Chestnut Branches by Van Gogh, 1890

For this Tuesday’s Poetics at the dVerse Poets Pub, Ingrid is back after a bit of a break and asks us to find our inner Blake or Wordsworth with visionary poetry and the poetry of dream.

She has given us examples of poetry that explores the relationship between vision, dream, and poetry (Wordsworth); between vision, dream and age (Hawksmoor); and between dream and childhood (Blake).

Our challenge is to write a poem inspired by a vision, dream, or both. We can return to Blake’s ‘dreams of infants’, perhaps inspired by a recurring dream (or nightmare) from childhood or write about more recent dreams which affected us in some way. She says: ‘If you have ever been fortunate enough to have seen visions, don’t hold back – write about them, let them inspire your muse. I want this to be an expansive, rather than restrictive exercise, so please, take Blake’s advice: “Damn braces; Bless relaxes.”’ (Proverbs of Hell, 1793)

I decided to rework my own translation of ‘Traum’ by Hermann Hesse, with an additional stanza adapted from an old poem.


42 thoughts on “Dreamless

  1. iN Deepest Death of Darkness Living

    THeRE Is Echo Cold So Very FRoZeN

    To CoMe to Be Every

    Second A Thousand

    Years Of Pain That’s

    Numb Empty Piece
    of Paper Existence Hell For Real

    No Living Tree RiSinG DaNCinG
    Green New Leaves Promise

    oF Falling Brown

    Dying For Winter
    FRoZeN SoiLs to

    Come Back to

    Life As Grass

    All Leaves
    of Life We aRe Born
    To Green This Lawn
    of Life Again Spring

    Without Any Fertilizer
    Or Pesticide Without
    Any Food or Drink of
    LoVE iN Peace Left to Breathe

    Oh The Roots Were Only GRoWinG
    Deeper Now No One Can Pull me Up

    New Not Even


    Slabs of Living Dead

    FLoWeRinG Weed i Am

    SMiLes Nice to See
    You Still Breathing on
    the dVerse Trail Dear Kim..:)

    Liked by 1 person

      1. My Pleasure Dear
        Kim Haha my Anthology
        Of Global Poetic Comments
        i Title “SonG oF mY SoUL”
        Arises to 11.2 MiLLioN
        Words In 112 Months
        Along With
        17,707 Miles
        Of Public Dance
        Bi-Monthly Macro-Verses
        Total 60,000 Words Each
        Fully Illustrated
        Crashing Newest
        iPhones Hehe One
        Solo EPiC Long Form
        “Depth of The Story”
        Poem Measures 2.2 MiLLioN
        Words in One Thread of 62
        Pages on
        A Place Online
        Called The ‘Wrong
        Planet’ Just Another
        ‘Small Subchapter’
        Close to The

        Top of A

        Search Just
        For The Joy New Of
        Dancing Singing Free Now☺️🙌

        Liked by 1 person

  2. On the spectrum, art and heart have varied radiance, and this is chilly moonlight – dreamless. Yet in age it is is honest to both, I think. Wonderfully, sadly done. My wife never remembers her dreams, which to me is both balm and bane.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Brendan. I remember my dreams only for so long and then they fragment, but I usually manage to hold on to some of them, those from the early hours.


  3. You present the feelings of loss, longing and emptiness with your heart. Really touching. The dreamless dawn part suggests to me that we, in the end, accept that there is no way to make the past comfortable.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Devastating in its negation of everything wholesome in the dreamer’s desires. The fried moth as immutable conclusion is so powerful. The reality that you translated it from Hesse and then expanded on it is impressive, Kim!

    Liked by 1 person

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