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The Ninetieth Dream: Adam wasn’t coming to get me. Where did he get the rucksack, and what was he doing leaving me out here alone on my face? Adam wasn’t my friend.
I pulled myself to my knees while he waited.
The pillar, at least the last twenty feet or so, looked as if it had just fallen over onto the valley floor and broken up into even segments like checkers. There was a hole in he ground where it had stood, and about four inches into this hole; you could see the top of yet another segment.
The Ninety-First Dream: The pillar wasn’t vibrating anymore. The floor of the valley was dry, and the fine pastel colored sand said it hadn’t seen anything wet for a long time, yet there were grass-like plants growing in it, purplish, and some greenish ones that actually looked succulent. Water in those leaves, I thought, or something. Glancing back up at the two moons in the day sky, it occurred to me that something was more likely than water, wherever I was. I started moving toward Adam, who just stood about fifty yards away chewing on his coffee stick.
The Ninety-Second Dream: I felt stiff, but tried to walk normally, tough because my left leg had gone to sleep. I didn’t want Adam thinking I was hurt, because I was hoping there might be water or something to eat in that backpack he had come up with, and because I had the feeling he would take off if he thought I were hurt. Still, I had lost my shoes somewhere, and it was difficult to walk in the loose sand. Then too, I didn’t have the added dignity of the backpack or the natty hat he had.
The Ninety-Third Dream: The moons were higher, and the sun was falling behind the windmills. The air was getting thicker, but not with moisture. It was light, or color. It was odd.
Adam waited patiently, chewing on that piece of plastic while I approached. Really, it was the only item of color about him. Everything he wore was that trailblazer color stuff. I was watching his face as I came closer, trying to get a better read on him. I’m not sure what distracted me, caused me to look down, but I noticed he was wearing my shoes.
The Ninety-Fourth Dream: I looked up at his blank face. He knew I knew he had my shoes. I thought a minute, trying to be subtle while checking to see if I still had my wallet. I hadn’t checked for it when I found myself on top the pillar. There was no reason to believe it was in my jacket pocket even then, but I did have my shoes on then. I was sure of that. Leaning forward, I felt the familiar lump in my jacket pocket lean out and into my arm. So it was still there.
The Ninety-Fifth Dream: I found my mind running off in directions of so what? Where were we? Was a credit card or ID going to do me any good here?
The sand wasn’t so bad, actually. It was the kind that actually would fill the shoes and make you miserable, but it was uncomfortably warm in spots, and a precedent was being set here, although I was beginning to judge Adam wasn’t the kind of guy to honor precedent.
I decided to fake a left. “You got any water in that knapsack?”
“I think so.”
“Can I see?”
The Ninety-sixth Dream: “Did you drink it any of it?”
He nodded quickly, setting the sack down to open it. “It seemed ok.”
“Where did you get it?”
“In the bag”
“No, where did you get the bag?”
“It was on the ground, over by the thing, like someone left it for us.” He hauled bottled water out of the bag tossing it at me. DaSani.
“Looks like you lost your shoes,” I said.
“I didn’t think you would need ‘em.” He was already on his butt, peeling the right one off.
“Didn’t check very hard did you?”
The Ninety-Seventh Dream:
I closed the pack, motioning to Adam. “All yours.”
“We could take turns,” he suggested.
I raised an eyebrow. He bent for the bag, and I looked around the valley. It was darker, but the one big moon gave off a lot of light. I wondered if it ever got completely dark here. I looked around. We could rest a bit, or just take off. I was to juked up on nerves to sleep. I gestured toward the cliffs. “Glass City, Adam?”
“Do we go there?” I pointed.
“My name’s not Adam. I’m Richard.”
The Ninety-Eighth Dream: I dream I am standing in twilight in the pastel valley with Richard, not Adam. We are, mumbling to one another about where we should go. We already know where we are going. We think we do, because while talking, we occasionally glance at the glass city in the distance, but we haven’t even mentioned it as one of the potential destinations yet. It is lit brightly now, one large square tower with a pyramid-shaped dome standing out and above all the rest. I’m guessing the city must be close to a hundred miles away.
The Ninety-Ninth Dream: I think we finally admit we are going to the glass city. I am reminded of stories about things behind doors and bad choices that even seemed to be good ones on first thought. Maybe we should go slowly and check out some of the other places, gain a better understanding of what this place is. It seems to me as I think of it that history has a lesson. That lesson is that when a technologically advanced culture meets a less advanced one, that the lesser one usually ends up as food or slaves.
The One-Hundredth Dream: Maybe part of the pillar has righted itself, and I am sitting on it watching Richard and me walk valley. We seem vulnerable, too naive about our journey, but it is a dream, and what can happen to you in your own dream? It seems that life is a dream, and we are dreaming dreams within dreams. I am out across the valley, running alongside them, breathing, bones rattling, feeling the joy of running as they walk along in silence. I’m seems I’m having dreams, both wonderful and uncertain, dozens of them all at once.
The sparkle has gone out of the trees. While I know the ice is still there, it is the sun that has quit work for a while, possibly behind a cloud taking a cigarette break. It must be frustrating for him that they burn up so quickly, that barely does he touch them before they are gone, and then the component components are gone. Indeed, the sun must wonder why he smokes at all, since he really cannot.
And then, the sparkle returns, crystals lighting across the wall of windows, each one a tiny shining face, peering inside at me.
At 2 AM even the snow is sleeping, careless, unlocked, open to intruders. Yet it doesn’t seem to care where it lays, curled in upon itself and back in to itself. At two o’clock in the morning, even the snow is bundled up and asleep, back against the night, belly to the warm earth below. It doesn’t bother to sparkle or shine. There’s no one to impress. It doesn’t take the footprints of strangers who pass by. Nor does it check identification. At 2 AM the snow is just a watchman, asleep, feet on the desk, thermos at his side.
What am I doing up at this hour? I went to bed on time. Yet I am back up three hours later. So, I take the standard drug cocktail, and begin typing, forming this slow drizzle of words. This blameless graffiti doesn’t bore me, this blameless graffiti; rather it cools my mind to where it is able to relax. It is the child racing the halls in the dark that keeps me awake, and this typing deposits it in a place where sleep finds it more easily. It doesn’t grumble when called to “come along now.” It goes peacefully, happily.
I bought another amplifier today. I didn’t need this thing, and while it sounds wonderful with my back-up speakers, I don’t know if it will be able to drive the Aerials when I get them fixed. It’s name is Cary, and I get some commends about all these women I hang out with, Aerial, Jo, Cary, Roksan, and for god’s sake Kandy.
And yes, there are troubles. Jo has been in a perfect pouting snit since the moment I brought Cary home. She son the table, motionless, arms folded across her chest. I will probably have to sell her now.
I wonder what it would be like to write poetry on an etcha skeeetchhh. One tumble and you’re gone, baby. It’s not unlike what I do, sneaking into town to and write my poems on the sidewalk next to the band shell. The geese are always interesting, offering suggestions that I can’t quite figure how to incorporate. Sometimes I have to write around their offerings.
But there won’t be any new etcha skeeetchhh for me for a while. Winter has come and my sidewalk is under snow. I suppose I could write in the snow. Yellow food coloring I think
I wanted to sleep today. My body wanted to sleep. The rest of me had things to do. Too many things to do to allow the body to have its way, yet I’m a little nervous because it is frequently said that one should listen to their body. I especially need to do this. I tried the sleeping thing for a while, and finally couldn’t stand it any more, getting up and going down to the coffee shop for a coffee and a scone. Maybe going there for the people contact too. Otherwise, why not just make the coffee myself?
Lately, I make my weekends hard. I don’t mean hard as in difficult. I mean hard as in closed off, alone. I do weekends alone. And I use this time. How do I use it?
I use this time to catch up on things I suppose, perhaps even to catch up on myself. I have been learning to live alone for the past two years. I’ve not been doing a good job at it. It still feels like grieving. But the weekends—those two days, shoulder to shoulder: this is the place I have decided to make my training ground.
Out The Window #1
I’m more comfortable doing these things in blocks; 100 pennies, 100 dreams, 100 suicide notes (Ok, that wasn’t such a good idea). So, I’m going out the window. I have a lovely window in front of me where I write. I thought I’d write about the window and the things that are in that world. It’s a door wall, about 12-feet wide, and my apartment’s on the third floor. There’s a road beneath, but I can’t see it when I’m sitting, so when I talk about the road, you’ll know I’ve been out of my chair.
Out The Window #2
We’ve got snow out the window today. But it’s fine stuff that you have to look hard to see, but there’s plenty of it. The trick to seeing snow like that is to focus your eyes between the window and a large tree across the road. If I look at the tree, I don’t see snow. The tree just looks a little fuzzy, and I am used to things looking a little fuzzy. I don’t see very well. I see colors even worse, and I can’t hear. How is it I experience the world at all?
Out The Window #3
I have gloom out the window today, a motionless tintype of a civil war battleground. A cannon carriage lies wrecked in the small gorge. It is covered by weeds, the barrel pointing askew, the top laced with snow. The wooden carriage itself comes and goes, now splintered, now lost in time. Fresh snow from last night has covered much of the rest, footprints covering footprints, splashes of blood frozen to the ground, tears of cloth and twisted pieces of metal. The cannon seems to be the only thing to make it intact through last night’s snow.
Out The Window #4
Two candle lanterns stand on the small table on the balcony. Wow, so much new information. We have candle lanterns, a table, and a balcony. The balcony stretches the full 12 feet of the window, meeting another window at the dining nook. I’ll give the balcony 5 feet in width, with a pressure-treated wood railing covered with snow. The tips of Christmas lights peek out of the snow along the rail. It is late for the Christmas tree lights, but they are frozen in place. Then too, I have a personality and a reputation to maintain.
Out The Window #5
A empty candle jar is canted in a snow bank on the table. It’s the cigarette butt holder. The watertight lid is nice in this weather. It replaced a bowl with a glass lid that leaked, causing problems. I don’t smoke anymore, but I leave it out there for visitors. My sons still smoke. Elizabeth smokes and she visited the other night, sitting on the doorsill blowing smoke out into the cold. She really didn’t want to go outside. I could tell. We compromised with her getting cold and my apartment picking up stale smoke odor.
Out The Window #6
It’s dark out there now. That’s what happens when I wait until 7:00 to do my 100 words. I see light reflections on the snow outside. That would be Winky and Blinky. Well, it would be Blinky because Winky has burnt out. Blinky goes on just long enough to realize there is light and turns himself off again. Then it occurs to him it is dark, and he flickers on again. Winky and Blinky used to do this dance together all night. Now Blinky still dances, thinking of Winky I suppose. I think he misses her.
Out The Window #7
There is no light today, although it is day. I can see a man walking his dog out by the road. I can see him down to the waist of his parka. It’s seventeen degrees out there. I can see the entire dog, because it walks farther out into the glen. I live in a glen. Actually I live in an apartment complex called Brighton Glens, but I can see what is left of the glen from where I sit. It is a yellow dog, shorthaired, maybe a Shepherd/Golden mix. That’s my best guess from here.
Out The Window #8
I can see the weather-beaten wind chime paddle weaving back and forth past the doorjamb. Normally it is hidden by the doorjamb, so when I see it I know there is wind. In winter, that is often the only indication I can get, other than Google. Google tells me what the temperature and wind speed is. It’s useful if I want to know how to dress. The wind chime is for other things I suppose. A friend who was cleaning her garage gave it to me originally. It went to Canada with me. Now it’s back.
Out The Window #9
Don’t you wonder what is out there? Do you wonder if there is an out there? What if…My friend says a Whatif sounds like a dog that chews on your leg…What if there is nothing out there? What if when I go out there, there is just a few feet of something that seems real? What if when I go down the stairs and out the door, out into the world, there is nothing but a bubble of imagination that rolls along in front of me. What if there is no “Out The Window” at all?
Out The Window #10
I thought I heard ice sliding off the roof this morning, but out the window says no. It’s 11 below out there, Centigrade. No ice melting or sliding anywhere. Everything is still in the cold, holding in against itself, against the cold, and my day calls for a walk later today. Better layer up Michael.
A blue-handled straw broom lies up against one corner of the balcony. I’ve grown careless leaving my broom out in the weather. I should bring it inside. In the summer and fall, I sweep the deck. I like it out there.
Out The Window #11
There’s a second broom out there, out on the deck, tucked into the place where the legs join beneath the table. It is a small broom, what is called a “Whisk” broom. My father used to call them that, and, a carpenter; he used one to clean up the dust and shavings around his work.
Yellow, with a blue sleeve, it is plastic, so it is ok being outside. This one I use to sweep the chairs before sitting down. I use it to clear debris off the table and sometimes even off the deck rail.
Out The Window #12
The sun is catching glint off an icicle hanging from the eave on the right side of the deck. I watched it moving this fall. During the summer morning sun shown right through the center pane. Then it moved right, across the next pane, over the club house, and finally so far to the right that this time of day I have to walk to the window to find it. It does move away from us in the winter. I have just never had it demonstrated so clearly. Or perhaps I just never bothered to watch?
Out The Window #13
The window is always between me and out the window. Sometimes I am out there. There are occasions when I drive by and look up at my window. At night I see the candle burning there. When I walk across to the laundry, I can see the window. In the summer I can go down to the pool, and I become one of the characters I see from here. Down there I merge with the other dancing characters and the trees gathered in gossip columns. I become the life that here is only out the window.
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