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The Thirtieth dream: The sky turns dark against headlights puzzled in rain. A truck ahead of me is throwing slush over my car and my wipers freeze as I try to pass him. As I slow down, they begin whipping in frenzy. You are handing me your toothbrush, and I feel it as a gift. The handle is too big for a toothbrush. Realizing the handle is wood, I look at the head, which again is too big for a toothbrush. There is a name on the handle, Goody, and the bristles are clogged with my daughter's hair.
The Thirty-first dream: I can't get into the 100 words site. My computer is blocking me. I can't remember why I wanted to anyway. I remember the new drugs that make me stagger against walls like a drunk, that make me repeatedly hit the wrong keys on the computer. Or is it 100 words that make me do this? There is a tiny red head in the dark, no a little face, red on red, over a red circle of a pillow or a hole. It is squirming and eating. One hundred words a hundred at a time.
The Thirty-second dream: The tackle shop was cool, and my eyes were adjusting to the darkness. I leaned my head over the edge of the minnow tank to watch them. It was even with my chin. I was that small. The grown men fished with minnows, the men who caught the big fish. I was on the bank with a cane pole with my father, the sun splashing in my eyes when I hooked the concrete block. I pulled the pole up hard and the big fish sailed over my head landing in the dust along the road.
The Thirty-third dream: My shoes are melting against the hard black iron surface. I can hear the cracking of joints and screams. Giant grasshoppers, green and yellow, their black eyes huge with terror surround me. My feet are burning. I am trying to move but my feet are stuck to the surface and the air is filling with the stench of burning things. Nearby a grasshopper head has welded to the surface. The screaming grows. The lame-legged spasms of their dry bodies. I am not a grasshopper. I am repeating over and over. I am not a grasshopper.
The Thirty-fourth dream: The dock on my grandmother's pond is wobbly. I'm afraid of it. I'm balancing myself with a long cane pole, red and white bobber swinging from the line. I've fallen in. I don't remember falling in, but I am standing near the shore, naked, and covered with pond grass, fish line and hooks. Hooks and lures are sticking in me everywhere. I am afraid to move. I can feel the grit of the pond mud oozing between my toes. On the bank, my uncle is laughing, his head thrown back, and his mouth wide open.
The Thirty-fifth dream: I woke up in an attic. The floor and ceiling were bare wood, dark with age. I was sleeping on a wooden bunk made of the same wood. A book lay on a crate near the bed. I saw light coming through a triangle of an air vent high on the gable but I couldn't see out. I could see the room though. I wasn't sure how. I could even make out the tongue and groove siding on the gable wall. There was a stairway, again of the aged unpainted wood. I walked down it.
The Thirty-sixth dream: At the bottom of the stairs was a long hallway of polished mahogany. A door was on the right side of the hall. I opened it. Inside, I wasn't sure whether I was in an office or a bedroom. The wall was bright with enormous panes of glass overlooking a beautiful glen. The room was filled with mobiles and tinker-toy-like gadgets, bright yellow, pink, and blue. I looked at the light switch, but wasn't sure what to do with it. It had three toggles, two push buttons, and four objects that looked like toy jacks.
The Thirty-seventh dream: Weeds stand tall around a small barn that the paint has long ago abandoned. The wood has rotted at the bottom, leaving gaps where the boards have given up completely. A racing sulky leans up against the side of the barn. The leather on its seat is torn away, but it looks useable. Away from the barn a young man is working torso deep in the engine compartment of a garish green racing car with angular white exhaust headers sprouting from the sides. The name painted on the side of the car is The Grasshopper.
The Thirty-eighth dream: I walked into the Gearhart's house, wiping my feet in the tiny entry. The door was heavy. Everything here is heavy and old. I have finished mowing the heavy old lawn and am going in for my glass of Pepsi. On the Table in the dinning room is a bowl of wax fruit. The orange has a set of tooth prints in it. Mine from long ago. Mrs. Gearhart is sitting in a straight-back walnut chair against the wall. Spider webs run from her chin to her knees. She has been dead a long time.
The Thirty-ninth dream: I know this place. I've been here before. I've been here, and I haven't been here. I know it, and I don't know it. It's summer now. The foliage is lush, creepers seeping up the statues in the gardens. I can see the broken dome from here, the rear of the house. It is huge and has its own water tower. There is a small library next door in the other dream. In this dream it is flanked by skyscrapers that block the light from the trees that grow jungle-like anyway. We'll go in soon.
The Fortieth dream: The boat might be a tug, or a ferry, I can't tell. The pilothouse is framed in large panes of glass. It is one moment a pilothouse and the next the entire boat. The boat is wood, with a white lapstrake hull. I move onto the dock with someone, but I don't know who. We walk off onto the dock, make two right turns and then we are on another dock, this one enclosed, the sides glassed in like the boat. Everything is lapstrake. Everything is white except the water, and even that is foamy.
The Forty-first dream: Speakers? Speakers found? They are piled in my daughter's room, all the speakers I have ever owned, even some I only have considered buying. I am particularly taken by a pair of EPI's. I liked them because they had a coloration, an inaccuracy really, which appealed to me. I am thinking they would go well with a Harman Kardon 430. Then I realize that was exactly what my first wife took in the divorce, the Harman Kardon and the EPI's. My friend Steve, a painter, said it would be like his wife taking his paintbrushes.
The twenty-ninth dream: Swallows are diving over serenity. These split-tailed birds are swallowing temperate sine curves of grace over the river, swallowing the waves, and swallowing ribbons of life against the sky. The Renaissance Center rises across the river, three silver towers cut again and again by swallows. Standing in the rain looking skyward with an open mouth, I am swallowing the river, the birds, the rooftops, chimneys, and sky. Reaching through clouds, I are swallowing the sun, feeling it's golden hot wax melting my chin. I swallow the cold hard moon, and then I swallow the night.
The Forth-third dream: She wears a thin cotton dress in a tiny apartment downtown, up a dark, bare, and steep wooden flight. I dream the stairs, and the soft wood sounds in the dark as I climb them. I dream the dark wooden door. This is where Aunt Marty lives in this dream.
A complicated landscape of colors and other buildings lean from the alley.
She smokes Lucky Strikes, but I don't smell that on her. In this dream everyone smokes, so no one notices.
Lucky Strikes are only things Aunt Marty leaves lipstick on, things like me.
The Forty-fourth dream:
I dream the bone box:
black, crafted hardwood.
A sturdy suitcase partitioned.
Pockets for bones.
Three feet long
with metal-reinforced corners.
Half a coffin for half a man.
Each bone labeled with a tiny black number so you can
check it against the label on the inside...
be sure you are holding
part you are knowing.
Dreaming of another now,
padded and silenced,
sleeping beneath the weight,
of earth, trees
Holding the cemetery down.
red, juicy, soft
and flowing vibrant.
The bone box.
The Forty-fifth dream: The college of poetry and auto repair. I dream I am a middle-aged man in a world of young people. I stoop by the road to scrawl poetry in the dirt. Looking away, I turn back to find the dirt has turned into a mud puddle. A long concrete sidewalk zigzags up to the cafeteria. A wooden rail made of 2x4 follows it. I walk along the rail like a monkey, writing poems, scratching them into the wood with the point of a 10-penny nail. Several students glance to watch me, but they tolerate me.
The Forty-sixth dream: I wake up on the couch, but this is not where I am. Confused, I feel around for a blanket, because I am cold. My boxer shorts are on backward. My ex-wife is standing in morning light, hands on her hips and, and she is watching me. She is wearing one of my hats, one I had lost. Is this hat's found? The hat is festooned with tin can lids, bicycle bells, and Duplo Blocks. As I look closer, the hat becomes an entire landscape, a carnival complete with a merry-go-round and a Ferris Wheel.
The Forty-seventh dream: I start this dream at the dentist where I am in the chair with a white smock covering my neck and lap, as if I were going to get a haircut. But I must be on my way home. I am driving a 1972 Duster down an alley so narrow that the car is scraping the bricks on both sides. Two men in another car approaches from the opposite direction. The passenger sticks his head out the window shouting at me to go back, but their car is also scraping the wall on both sides.
The Forty-eighth dream: The garden of hearts. I am sleeping, dreaming a surprise of myself. I am following the heavy bloom of deep river, carrying a heart that seems like it is not mine, but one that I have to take care of nevertheless.
Walking the riverbank through deep grass and out into woods, I notice other hearts growing in rings like mushrooms after a night rain. They are gently planted, and beating softly in time to the river bloom. Are these mine to care for too?
The heart I am carrying beats in synch with the others.
The Forty-ninth dream: The garden of hearts. The thud of the hearts beating together fills the sky. I am becoming aware that I have to be careful where I step without stepping on one. You can't step on a heart, and I know these to be hearts. I don't know how I know. They are not malignant growths; they are pure hearts, pounding with the ache, love, and wonder of all hearts. They are dangling from the trees like apples. A sister heart for every heart beating in the world, sister hearts for the one I am carrying.
The Fiftieth dream: The garden of hearts. I hear a splash and a heart leaps from the river, followed by another. I feel the life in this place. The hope, the ache, and the relentless love. We are all hearts apart beating in time.
Breathe now. Share the grief. Share the pain and joy. Inhale the love and the music of the human soul. Bathe in this grace. Lie in this grove, and rest in this place. Leave your heart here to be tended. All that is needed is a gardener, and maybe not much of a one.
The Fifty-first Dream: The Garden of Hearts. Resting against a tree, I hear the hearts singing above me. I see little ones sprouting in the grass, in the dust, even in the space between my legs. They are beating and singing, and the river and trees are singing. They are singing of joy, pain, love and this grace, and I am rising against the tree trunk. I can feel it's bark scraping against my back as I rise into the sky borne by the heart I carry and it is singing in chorus; a magic aria of joy.
The Fifty-Second Dream: The Garden of Hearts. The dream moves me above the tree where I am watching the river winding below, the trees, where I still hear the singing and still feeling the pounding of the heart I am carrying. The blue sky is vibrating like a captured cathedral, pulling me farther up where I can't breathe anymore, and I am even more at peace. My mind is at rest; my body is dreaming, and this thing in my hands is moving, aching, and singing the way only a heart of joy can sing. Now I understand.
The Fifty-Third Dream: The Garden of Hearts. This is where the hearts come to heal when finally released. This is the end of their journey's pain. The ache in my chest is nothing but the hole where the heart was, a damp and clotted place wheezing in and out. It matches this thing in my hands, this whole. I don't want to join the two. I'm afraid I will lose something I once had, something I loved with this thing in my hands, something that I loved enough to pull the heart from my body as an offering.
The Fifty-Fourth Dream: The Garden of Hearts. Now I see the river and trees growing larger. Drifting down in vertigo, I can see crowds, searchers of the human heart. Their shirts, jackets and blouses are open and there are holes in their chests where the wind moves in and out aching a chorus like a bent note that rises with the singing of the hearts in the garden. The music is a chord, a discord, and I am falling in this dream of hearts, holding mine closer to myself, knowing I cannot drop it, cannot let it go.
The Fifty-Fifth Dream: I'm dreaming this day, my eyes sodden with Ativan, A salt mist drifts on the air, distilling things I see into snapshots of brief clarity. I slip through the patio window without opening it. Reaching my hand to play with the paddle of the wind chime I realize I don't have to touch it. It is my dream, and I simply dream the wind chime paddle to move. I dream the chimes to sing. The fog moves and the patio is gone, leaving me looking with curiosity at the space between the ground and me.
The Fifty-Sixth Dream: I dreamt that all the ponds were glass. The wind couldn't touch them. The sun shown through them, throwing prisms of rainbows into the air, and you could clearly see reflections of trees and the sky in every one of them. They were glass right up to the edges, fitting perfectly against the banks where there were no rocks, and where the mud itself seemed made of glass. I dreamt we walked on the ponds. I dreamt glass skaters and children wearing ice skates who slipped on glass, drawing thin lines that disappeared behind them.
The Fifty-Seventh Dream: I dreamt I was at the doctor's office. He had been called away and I was sitting at his desk, one of those clangy Steelcase things. I pulled open the drawer and it was full of chocolates, and I began eating them. As I ate the chocolates the walls of his office began dissolving, and soon I was in a large sunny lobby eating chocolate. Housekeepers wandered by and I offered them chocolates. They sat on the desk, eating chocolates. A mop bucket parked in the hall wandered over, nudging my leg for a chocolate.
The Fifty-Eighth Dream: I dreamt beauty. I dreamt I was standing on a pillar of stone, a mile high in a perfect blue sky. About two feet in diameter, the pillar roared straight down to&well, I couldn't tell yet in this dream. I didn't know how I had gotten here, but the vista was beauty. Purple jagged cliffs soared across a valley, their colors turning orange and a vivid green as they touched down. In the distance, to my left was what looked to be a city of gleaming white glass. There were two moons in the sky.
The Fifty-Ninth Dream: I dreamt the rain, falling in noisy sheets against my window. Standing naked at the window, I looked out, not seeing the curtain, but feeling each drop banging against the window, feeling them all simultaneously. The rain pounded. It was a sluice, a car wash. We flowed over the building, pounding the dirt into mud and trenching it down to the holding pond where we slid in from a thousand directions. The pond could feel the rain at its back, beating. The pond drank in deep gulps while curled asleep dark within its own depths.
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