Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Humid September darkness. A sad son sick in bed. Insomnia, nightmares, a conclave of owls outside my window, and finally black coffee and daylight.

Mounds of marigolds bloom bravely in the exhausted garden. The red dahlias overflow into the long grass. Yesterday's clean laundry hangs motionless on the lines. A grasshopper chirrs. In the distance, I hear the basso moan of a skidder dragging trees into someone's woodyard.

A shadow of the nightmares lingers . . . images of a tiny helpless stupid woman, two small girls, a terrible black-haired schoolmaster, and now I am trying to convince the woman not to leave the girls with him, I am trying to escape from the wretched travel-trailer that is the school, and now my car keys have vanished and his dreadful fleshy face is leering against my window . . .

You know these dreams.


Carlene said...

Interestingly, your nightmare sounds like it comes from a book I've been reading, Becoming Jane Eyre ( Charlotte Bronte's tortured images in her imagination, derived from a really complicated experience with her school master and compounded by her brother's dissolution, become the foundation for much of Rochester and of another, earlier, failed attempt at a novel (The Professor). I don't know if you've read this small novel, but it's really wonderful.

That being said, those frightening dreams of being unable to function are the ones that truly do hang like a miasma that even black coffee cannot dispel.

I hope you have a better day!

Dawn Potter said...

I haven't read that novel, but I've read all of the Brontes' books many, many times, as well as various biographies of both Charlotte and Emily. You're right about the way in which they channeled nightmares into their creative work.