November 2, 2011

They could take or leave you so they took you and they left you

The moment when you realize you are in a dream places you in exactly the half-life position of awake and asleep. Semi-conscious. It's the only moment when you can honestly lie to yourself. It's brief, but powerful.

For example, I have never been to Spain. But I was in Spain and who should I meet in Spain but any old ghost who probably has also never been to Spain. I don't think he expected to see me either, in Spain let alone in my own dream. We loved each other, knowing full well the chronological hiccup. We wanted something that needed no explanation, no disclaimer. We wanted to be kind to each other and make good choices and learn new information. Not much else more than that.

If there was anyplace for such transgressions against one's own heart, where better than in a dream? It's a hyper-present tense. The trick is to fool yourself into believing that it is a self-aware dream. But if you can't, you might as well indulge anyway. You may never get another chance.

The ceilings were 80 feet tall, and the walls the same beige in his living room. We would mostly watch TV in there. There were no televisions here. Just sunlight and beige. I imagine Spain is a beige and sunny sort of place.
There was a party, and everyone I haven't spoken to in years was there. I avoided them. Who wants to waste a dream with small talk fictional catch-up? All of the questions I wanted to ask him but didn't resurfaced. In the punch bowl, the screeching birds in the garden, an RSVP.
I didn't really need to know, but I found myself wondering: How much alcohol did you consume when you left me? How many email drafts did you neglect to send? Did you get your books in the mail okay? Did you ever fully realize the absurd things you said to me? Could you ever, in all your years, ever tell me anything that will make me feel okay about speaking to you again? Would you even be clever enough for that?

I didn't ask. I ate the hors d'oeuvres and thanked the host and he sauntered off for the loo or whatever, saying he would be right back.  Even in dreams I didn't respect him enough to bother. Besides, he'd probably just tell me things my subconscious would want to tell me.

What a fantastic feeling, to wait in a dream. For nothing and anything. To not be able to anticipate your own expectations. While they gnashed at me in waking life, those sleeping dogs lied here.

He returned, transformed. Some other replacement specter I know in the now. When he told me he had to leave, I was thrust into full but sleepy consciousness by the ding-ding of my phone alerting me to a new text message. I picked it up in the same trajectory of that conversation.
It was a premonition. I did not even have to read it to know.

I don't think I've ever had a dream transition so acutely into reality. Something transcended but I was left behind. The rest of the day I dared my subconscious the takeover it was threatening, provoked it even. How much crazed and erratic behavior would inspire another deja vu?
How long will I have to wait to surprise myself?

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