The girl with the red umbrella

The things I'm not

I lie awake at night
makings lists of things I cannot be…

I am not a dancer,
but my heart doesn’t know that.
It makes my toes tap
each time it feels the rhythm of a song.
It doesn’t know there’s need for longer feet
and stronger arms.
It doesn’t feel the extra weight,
it doesn’t care the muscles hurt.
My heart can’t rest
until it matches every single note.
All it knows is that
my feet were meant to dance.

I am not a painter,
but my eyes don’t know that.
They think you catch beauty in a brush
just by looking.
They don’t know you paint with the heart,
not with the hands.
They don’t care you must feel much more
and think much less.
My eyes can’t hide their lust
for all the beauty in the world.
All they know is that
my hands were meant to paint.

I am not a writer,
but my mind doesn’t know that.
It makes my fingertips storm the keyboard
at every thought.
It doesn’t care of rhyme or structure
of classic tales and modern verse.
It doesn’t see my words are much too empty
and my stories way too thin.
My mind can’t stop making up lines
others have written before.
All it knows is that
my fingers were meant to write.

I lie awake at night
Making lists of things I haven’t been,
Counting every failure I had
and all the trophies that I’ve missed,
Marking each step I never took
and every place I’ve never been,
Gathering people I’ll never be
and all the things I’ll never do.
But my dreams don’t know all that,
Because I close my eyes,
And in my dreams
I am a dancer and a painter and a poet.

Middle ground

Sometimes we used you as a showcase,
Fresh photos from our last adventure.
Dad says:
Don’t smudge them,
they’re still wet
Do memories really stain? I ask
I’ll keep the records in my heart.

Sometimes you were our promised land,
Delicious cookies lined up to dry.
Mom says:
Don’t touch,
they can crumble,
Do flavours come in shapes? I ask
I’ll focus on the taste of joy that’s coming after.

Sometimes you acted as a bridge,
Witty sisters and funny uncles.
Parents bring steaks
and wine
and good manners,
Is happiness a secret recipe? I ask
I think I‘ll add a bit more love, more laughter.

Stage to our imagination,
Canvas for our watercolours,
Fragrant rose garden,
Faithful friend to dry our tears,
Witness to our shouts and apologies,
Wall between love and anger,

Were you just an old table
In my parents’ living room?


When you are lost in the dark
I’ll be there with a candle
to light the path.

When it's time to face the demons
I’ll be there with a shield
to help you win.

When you are wrong or unjust
I’ll be there with a mirror
to make you see.

When you are happy and full of hope
I’ll be there with a glass
to celebrate.

When you're away in time or space
I’ll be here with my love,
to guide you home.

But I might need your umbrella
from time to time
to help me through my storms.


Warm shadows on a quiet beach,
waiting for the sun to come out of the sea,
trembling with hope and dreams
of what will be.

Green benches in a crowded park,
hidden from sight and far from every path,
vibrating with love and lust
when our lips kiss.

Mysterious rocks on a mountain path
leading through the woods to no clear end,
toying with time and space
for love between.

Brave seats inside an airplane,
speeding towards undiscovered worlds,
imagining millions of adventures
when we land.

Soft cushions on the sofa,
filled with laughs, tears and inspiration,
breathlessly watching the movie
on a screen.

Worn chairs at a magic desk,
working on dreams and new beginnings
for every single project
built together.

All mere witnesses
to our story together,
always side by side.


Every happy day
followed by a restless night
worrying about what will follow.

Every small victory
shadowed by doubts
of all the ways it was undeserved.

Every drop of love
diluted by fear
of the split second between together and alone.

What if tomorrow comes
and I have no plan?
What if you hurt
and I can't make it better?
What if you'll get sick
and I can't save you?
What if I die
and make you sad?
What if
we're much too happy now?
What if
we want too much?
What if
we lose it all...


Don't look back,
Memories pray for you to stay
And be their captive.

Don't look down,
Worries hunt your brain
To drag you under.

Don't look up
Dreams whisper in the wind
Lies and deceit.

Just look ahead
And take it


When sadness storms
I'll be prepared,
The stream of tears
Won't touch my skin.

When worries roar
I'll be all right,
No thoughts or fears
Will chill my bones.

But even my umbrella
Needs to close,
From time to time,
So I can see the sky.