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Dreams 8-6-16

September 6, 2016

I was a young man on a street in a city, at around 4 in the morning. It was mildly cold, as in a moderately cold climate in February or early March, and I was not wearing a coat. The street was empty. I had been up and out all night, and there was no one else around. But then a close friend, a young woman, called. She was nearby, so she came to join me. Like me, she was not wearing a coat. We walked around, as the sky slowly became visible, as a something not so far above our heads, talking about how life was going. She seemed happy enough, but bothered by it all. As always, it was hard to know whether things were okay or not okay.

Then we were joined by a young man whom we saw on the street from time to time, who also had been up and out all night. Like us, he was tired but gamely awake and heading into the day. My friends talked about where they would like to find some food. Then they headed off together, in the direction of a lighter spot, almost shining, on the horizon. The air was chilly and still vaguely opaque, as if there was a grey frost hanging in it. But the day might turn out to be sunny. We would see.

As my friend walked away, she tugged at her clothes to get them hanging straight, but I could see that they were on crooked and had been slept in too many times.

From that dream it seemed that I moved directly into another, in which I was a distant, but not detached, observer.

A woman I knew, 35 or so, highly educated and cultured, had been hired by a wealthy family to travel in Europe with their 20-yr-old daughter, and tutor her to perceive, understand, and appreciate some of the finest things of life. After a year of pleasant friendship, here they were, in Florence, standing at a window of the Uffizi, looking out along the banks of the Arno, with its unpretentious but beautiful buildings with which the Italians had reclaimed the civilized out of the rubble of Nazi demolition and allied bombing, and the feathery young green on the trees, that probably looked the same as when, for instance, George and Lucy saw them in A Room with a View.

The young woman turned to her mentor and friend, and said, “How dare you, all this time, treat me as if I was ignorant and beneath you. You have no idea what it is to be really wealthy, like I am, and to see what life is really like. I’m leaving. I have a plane to catch, and the greatest friends in the world to join.”

But it was like I was watching a movie that I had seen before. As she turned to the older woman, I knew what she was going to say, and I said to my friend, “I really don’t like this part and I don’t want to watch it again.” With that, the dream ended, as if we had turned off the DVD player.

Shortly after that I began to be aware that I had been sleeping very deeply and had dreamed those two dreams, and that now I was waking up. I realized that nothing external had wakened me, and that I had not chosen to wake. The organism was doing what it is in the habit of doing at about that time each morning, and I was slowly becoming consciously participant in the progression of activities. I knew what time the clock would say. After turning off the DVD I had rolled from my left side onto my back, and now I felt how stiff and achy my body was. I opened my left eye. Closed it. I knew that I would have to get out of bed soon in order to get to the bathroom. With some stretching I rolled onto my right side, swung my legs out from under the covers, and tilted slowly around and upward, as in restorative yoga, keeping my head low, as long as possible, wanting not to rattle the stones in my inner ears and bring on a bout of vertigo, sat on the bedside, opened my eyes, looked at the clock (no surprise) and got up.

Twenty minutes later, having made coffee (French press / plunger pot) I sat down to write.

I turned on the computer and spoke my first words of the day, “Merci, monsieur. Mesdames.” I was happy in a soft, quiet morning after a night of rain. Then I started recording my dreams. “I was a young man on a street in a city. . . .”

From → dreams, Uncategorized

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