“I see, from a sailor’s view …”


Poet Judith Serin and visual artist Masami Inoue are dreaming again … BROAD STREET is proud to be publishing their new collaborations every week in February, starting with “Dream Mountains and Water.”  What is the difference between a West Coaster and an East Coaster? Perhaps the answer is as small as a cherry.


Dream Mountains and Water

I see, from a sailor’s view, green and brown mountains with cliffs rising directly from water.  One is shaped like Marin’s Mount Tamalpais, though with the feel of Hawaii in its bright color and sudden height.  I note its lip of a ridge many feet above the sea, thinking how hard it would be to climb.  In the next dream I tell my friend Cathy about this one, announcing with inaccurate dream logic that I’m now a westerner rather than an easterner because I think of brown instead of gray for mountain rock.  We stand on a gravel rooftop planted with cherry trees.  I ask Cathy and my brother-in-law Nick if we should cut down the saplings.  No, they answer, the older trees have grown here so long they’ve seeded these.  I spot the ripe cherries hanging from their branches and reach to try one.


Judith Serin is the author of the poetry collection  Hiding in the Worldand her work has appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies, includingThe Ohio Journal, Writer’s Forum, Nebraska Review, Colorado State Review, Proposing on the Brooklyn Bridge, and When Last on the Mountain. She presents these pieces with gratitude to Betsy Davids.

Masami Inoue, who also works under the name Masa, is a Japanese-American artist who has lived on both coasts of the United States. Most recently she moved from the Bay Area, where she and Serin began their collaboration, back to the East Coast.  She creates both digitally and traditionally, focusing on watercolor as her medium.  One of her paintings was featured in the “Maps & Legends” issue of Broad Street.

** Read an interview with Judith and Masami about the collaborative process by clicking here: “Illustrating the Poem that Records the Dream.”

About the Series

Judith Serin is a dreamer—a very vivid dreamer—and when we at Broad Street read her work, it sparked a lively conversation.  We’re a nonfiction magazine, but who’s to say that dreams, with their jumble of memories and images and things we’ve never seen, aren’t a kind of reality in a world for which we don’t yet have a map?

We had to think of a way to bring the debate to our readers.  In summer 2016 we published six installments of what a weekly series called Dream Geographies, a collaboration between Serin and artist Masami Inoue.  The two came from different backgrounds to meet at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco’s Bay Area, and the project reflects some of their shared landscape.