By Katja Kramer

As a kid, she used to wish on the fluffiest dandelions, keeping the stems in her purse so that months or years later, they would remind her of the things she had wished for. Suddenly she’s not upset anymore that they never came true; suddenly she doesn’t recall wishing for anything in the first place. The image of white fuzzy seeds floating in the air is replaced by one of vibrant confetti flying around. Shredded paper of various colors is all it is; it’s shot into the air where it floats for half a minute or so until it falls to the ground and is stomped on by people who were so very enthralled by it just seconds ago. Watching confetti in the air certainly is not the main event and most people forget about it as soon as it’s out of sight; it actually seems altogether trivial, simply being an addition to something bigger—and yet, it carries so much joy and causes so much excitement the moment it appears before the faces of the crowd. She doesn’t think of the confetti before she sees it, but boy, is she happy when she does.

For an evanescent eternity, the plate on her kitchen table—along with the now dry and odorless scraps of whatever once laid there—vanishes and gone is the evidence that she failed to finish it. Forgotten is that message she sent two months ago that never got an answer and so are the disconsolate voicemails from a few years back. She becomes deaf to the voices echoing the words spoken in her living room just yesterday; in the flash of light, blind to the silent resignation she’s come to discern in so many eyes—including those in her mirror. Smells of sweat and smoke dismiss the stream of salt making its way to her lips as the distant memory of somebody else.

For a fleeting glimpse of insouciance, there are no mistakes, no regrets, no could-have-beens in her past. She’s oblivious to the friends she’s painfully watched walk out of her life and indifferent to the broken bits left lying in the doorway reminding her of how close they once were. It no longer matters that the man she thought she loved decided against her; his hair, his gaze, his smile—they’ve all been part of a daze some doe-eyed girl got caught in. Some girl, but not her—she would know better.

As she won’t once stop dancing for hours on end, she doesn’t remember redoing her makeup several times this evening for the tears just wouldn’t stop flowing down her cheeks; neither would she recognize herself in the girl who could lie in bed for days—empty and still overthinking. Her smile, her energy, her cheerfulness—they’re all sincere in the moment; they’re sincere because right now, there is no unfinished plate on her kitchen table, no unanswered texts or voicemails she regrets, no fights and tears and heartbreak, no unfulfilled dreams—they’re all someone else’s mess but not hers and not right now. They’re not hers. For an evanescent eternity, all she hears is music, all she does is dance, all she sees are lights and all that matters is confetti.

Wanderlust Or How I Feel Glued to My Place

By Ann-Katrin van Loosen

She stood there as long as she could remember. That small but big street light. Like a tall gentleman with a hat.

At day her light is off, invisible like the stars. Still, they are always up there. No matter the darkness or a storm, light always keeps humanity company.

On bright summer days, the trees will protect the street light with their shadows. Which is really nice because her metal could get really hot. And on dull winter days, sometimes human in cosy coats would visit her and bring knitted scarves; she liked the colourful ones the most. In those moments the birds watch from their seats in the treetops, hoping for the kind ones among the two-legged giants to leave them a handful of delicious seeds.

The street light likes to watch too. She likes to keep watch on those who walk through the park. Those who will hasten past her but also those who will lie down and savour the sun. Sometimes nibbling on small foods making the street light wish to know how these treats taste.

The next lamp is far away. So the street light would get sad sometimes, wishing to be able to talk and share her observations with them. But then she will be greeted by the singing birds or one of the bunnies that hop through the park. On lucky days she’ll even be greeted by lively dogs, wagging their little tails so much that it looks like they will take of any moment, like a helicopter. And on rare days, on the bench across from her, a lazy cat will doze off in the comfort of the sun.

And when the little but big street light watches the humans leave at the end of the day, she asks herself what the outside world looks like. How far must the land stretch behind the sundown?  Does it have more water than the small pond in this place? Where foreign ducks will idle away their days.

Seeing how the blue sky stretches so far above the park, there must be a lot of other wonderful places full of life.

„Oh how I wish I could be able to travel the world!“ thinks the small but big street light to herself.