Viewing entries tagged
Dreams

THE 9 STEPS

THE 9 STEPS

STEP 1:  REMOVE ALL REMINDERS FROM YOUR HOME

Quickly, take down those pictures from where you stuck them in the top corner of your mirror, the ones you glance at as you snap your bra closed first thing in the morning.  Your faces, pushed together in the way you’d only stand beside someone with whom you’ve developed a legitimate closeness, will remind you too powerfully of a hope you cannot allow yourself to harbor anymore.  And the pictures that were carefully placed inside of ornately jeweled frames, the ones you’d trimmed unevenly because you’ve still not mastered the art of the cutting with scissors?  Those need to be yanked free and must no longer decorate your coffee table or that black thing you bought that West Elm calls a “console.”  It’s okay that, to this day, there are still three empty frames that sit in one of your desk drawers, a glaring reminder that once images glowed happily from beneath some glass but now there’s just some emptiness.  But remember: it’s not just photographs that will stir up longings or cause you to feel nothing but fragile in that way that you hate.  No, there’s other shit cluttering up your home, stuff that’s barricading up your mind with useless remnants from the past.  These tangible items will corrode your heart bit by bit in a way that will feel like the sting of acid must as it runs through your veins.  The stuffed animal he won at a fair, the one you named? He needs to be carted off to the nearest dumpster immediately.  Colorful magnets that live on the front of your refrigerator that were purchased on a happier day than today need to be buried under trash like empty pill bottles and dyed corks of red wine because, if you can’t see them anymore, maybe you can convince yourself they never existed in the first place.  And those dried flowers, the ones he gave you on that first night?  Well, those need to be destroyed.  Besides, daisies aren’t your favorite flower anymore.  You like pink peonies now.

STEP 2:  WHATEVER YOU DO, REFRAIN FROM LOOKING IN THE MIRROR 

The person whose reflection you see glaring back at you is someone you won’t even recognize.  There is hollowness in her eyes, a deadness in her smile.  Her pallor will have turned a truly unflattering shade of grey and the dimples in her cheeks won’t be nearly as pronounced as they usually are.  Those dimples – usually your favorite physical feature – will no longer indent in a manner you think of as charming.  No, it will just look like you’ve got two holes pounded into the centers of your cheeks and you’ll notice them immediately on the rare moments you do find yourself settling into a bland grin.  Just face the fact that looking at yourself will only give you painful ideas that maybe the reason it didn’t work out is because he was drawn to girls who don’t appear lost and instead behave like an Orthodox Jew might during Shiva:  cover the mirror – all of the mirrors – so you have no need to be reminded of the dead.

A CONVERSATION WITH THE UNIVERSE

A CONVERSATION WITH THE UNIVERSE

Maybe it’s because The Real Housewives of Orange County all but devolved into a terrifying trip to a haunted church camp this past week and my mind is still trying to recover from being thrust soul-first into choruses of Amazing Grace that were harmonized by scummy women who clearly value liposuction more than they value the Lord, but I can’t seem to get prayer out of my head.  

I can’t quite qualify myself as someone who prays regularly, but that’s been changing a bit.  I do pray – though it’s more to the universe at large than to a particular God – and I seem to be partaking in those very personal moments more than usual these days.  Obviously, some of what I bandy about late in my bed at night to the powers that cannot be seen is rather personal, but since I get to fully control what it is I share here, allow me to tell you about some of the conversations I’ve been having lately with a universe that I dearly hope is not hard of hearing.  Sure, some of my prayers might strike you as superficial and perhaps others might strike you as though they were generated inside the mind of someone who is mildly psychotic, but since one of the things I pray for consistently is the continued ability not to give a shit about what other people think about me, I’m gonna forge ahead:  

Dear Universe,

Please allow me to believe that there is no bottom to the reservoir of compassion, talent, forgiveness, and drive that I rely upon more often than I do air.  Do not ever allow me to embrace the idea that I have been depleted of goodness or of the capacity to generate the levels of energy I need to secure for myself all it is that I desire.

 

BLUE

BLUE

I found myself with my very best friend from childhood in an ice cream shop on the corner of a town I’d never been before.  She and I hadn’t seen one another in years, not since that time we bumped into each other on the train and had that second of not knowing if we should hug each other or kiss each other’s cheeks or maybe just let our eyes sweep beyond one another while pretending that we were both absolutely intent on focusing right then on the exact color of the sky – which was just a regular shade of blue.  But at the ice cream shop it only felt normal and that dormant closeness that would probably always exist somewhere inside of both of us fused together and we stood on line and contemplated our options.

The flavors were weird.  I saw signs for Root Beer sorbet and Creamsicle ice cream.  There were tubs of ices filled with something that was light green and labeled Ginger Ale.  My eyes immediately moved to the glossy picture on the wall that was a perfect looking sundae made out of ice cream the exact color of Cookie Monster and it was mixed with huge chunks of cookies and the bold font beneath the image told me I could order a Monster Cookie sundae loaded down with hot fudge.

AWAKE

AWAKE

There’s something going on and I don’t exactly know what it is or how I would describe it, but if whatever has been wrecking constant havoc with my emotions and with my mind was made up of a heavily-pigmnanted color, I think that color would probably be a dark maroon, almost blood-red at its core.

Part of it all is that I’m not doing the normal things like sleeping or eating like I usually do.  I take this herbal stuff to make me fall and hopefully stay asleep, but it hasn’t worked the way it usually does in that it usually makes me slide into an uneasy slumber and wake up a few hours later and roll to the side and check out the time and feel grateful that I still have several more hours of maybe-sleep to go.  But, though I’m still taking those pills, I haven’t been falling asleep.  I’m trying to blame it on anything I can besides what I fear it really is.  I tell myself that the weather is changing and I like to sleep in a room that feels cool and that I have a lot on my mind when it comes to all that must get done between now and late June at work.  I admit to myself that I feel the need to continually come up with ideas for my writing and that I’m terrified that Bravo will unleash a new set of Housewives in some random rural city and then I’ll feel the unwelcome desire to follow those lunatics too but on the upside, maybe I’ll finally get to see what a real life Dairy Queen actually looks like because a Dairy Queen is where a part of me believes all rural people spend all of their time.

WRITTEN EXPOSURE

WRITTEN EXPOSURE

DREAMS. SEE, THEY'RE LIKE THIS: VIVID AND FRAGMENTED ALL AT ONCE, HYPER COLORFUL WITH PIECES OF BLACK AND WHITE AND MOMENTS OF SEPIA MIXED IN; THEY'RE FLEETING, BUT THERE'S ALMOST A HAZE THAT'S LEFT BEHIND.

THERE'S DREAMS I HAVE AND THERE'S DREAMS I HAVE THAT I REMEMBER, AND THEN THERE ARE THOSE AWAKE DREAMS, THE ONES THAT BEGIN AS HOPES OR PRAYERS THAT ONLY BECOME SOLID AND REAL WHEN I MAKE THEM HAPPEN.

MAKING THINGS HAPPEN IS HARD. 

THERE IS DOUBT. 

THERE IS LAZINESS. 

THERE IS BIG BROTHER TO WATCH THREE TIMES A WEEK DURING SUMMER. 

SUNDANCE

SUNDANCE

THE FIRST TIME I SAT DOWN IN A THEATRE AT SUNDANCE, I BURST INTO TEARS.

I WAS IN PUBLIC; THEY WERE NOT HEAVING, CRAZY-PERSON TEARS.  BUT JUST AFTER I FILED INTO MY ROW AT THE EGYPTIAN, THE BEAUTIFUL OLD-SCHOOL MOVIE HOUSE ON PARK CITY’S MAIN STREET, I LOOKED UP AT THE SCREEN.  WHATEVER LOGO AND CATCHPHRASE THE PROGRAMMERS HAD SELECTED FOR THAT YEAR’S FESTIVAL SHONE BRIGHTLY, PROJECTED FROM A LIGHT THAT APPEARED ALMOST DIVINE, AND I LEANED BACK AGAINST THE PLUSH SEATS (I’M NOT SURE ANYMORE, BUT I THINK THE SEATS WERE MADE FROM A BURGUNDY VELVET), AND I COULD NOT BELIEVE THAT I WAS THERE.

SHOW A LITTLE FAITH, THERE'S MAGIC IN THE NIGHT

SHOW A LITTLE FAITH, THERE'S MAGIC IN THE NIGHT

"I know I was lost for a while and you just got me back," my fluffy, white Maltese proclaimed. "But I have a Philosophy lecture to attend, and I don't want to miss it. Can I please go?"

"Well, Wookie," I answered patiently, "your eyesight is not great, so I'm afraid that you won't be able to find your way back to me. I don't want you to miss class, though. I'll take you."

And then I woke up.