Dreaming Inverting

While looking through my digital file archive I came across a poetic glace into the dreams I once had. I share this with you so that you might see your own reflection in a different way too. 

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Shadows and whispers from another world, created or manifested solely for you

Nothing else exists beyond you at that moment, nothing else exists, only you. 

Why?

Are you a simulation? Are you the glitch? 

Beyond that moment, nothing exists, it is a manifestation for you only.

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Something clicked. 

I had no idea what I was in the midst of uncovering, wallowing in my mediocrity.

See I’m too inside my own head, but that is the point. I have always known deep down that though life is a strange miracle, it is essentially meaningless. Maybe it is the religion and science from a young age clashing in my mind, but I lean like a scale constantly shifting. My soul lives, my brain bends to suit the curves of my imagination, but I am lost in that. Living as I am, a soul; still, I am one in billions. I can bathe in my self-worth and wallow in my individuality, but I know that I am but a speck. I am no genius, no great-mind or notable person, at least not yet. I was born to live, learn, maybe love, and then die. I comfort myself with the thought that no great mind will truly ever  be remembered—we constantly climb to the top of the heap, leaving the characters of yesterday to crumble to oblivion., Who knows, thousands of years ago, who was truly special— we remember the people of note today, but history forgets tomorrow, erases and crumbles. And one day no history will be remembered. 

Typical. Those days, as I recalled, consisted of the mediocrity and self-indulgence I labelled as ‘self-care”, might I say, bullshit. Waking up with tired eyes, getting dressed, only to rush to somewhere where the only thing that keeps me going is the notion of returning to my warm bed with soft sheets. I have trivial interactions, now more sneers than smiles; I know not what has brought this on, but generally, I associate this melancholia with winter. But really, I feel it had more to do with my subconscious knowing that my life only exists as fulfilled as a shell, my desires are stifled, not knowing what I want, not knowing how to achieve that, and just maybe the underlying realization that I had been trying to console myself from, that my life was nothing, that I am nothing. 

Woman in bed Photo by Kinga Cichewicz from Unsplash Tears were foreign things, my emotions so underwhelmingly suppressed with no hope of revival in sight. Maybe it was a bad boyfriend, maybe it was something someone said to me, maybe it was my teachers teaching me to fear the world and accept my mediocrity, maybe it was the quarrels I watched my family get into, or maybe it was the water whirling down the drain to become nothing again. I was spiralling, my motions were dense and joyless. 

There is something to be said about teaching children that they are special and individual; that they should desire to surpass expectations; and then slowly and cruelly revealing to them that no matter how many hoops they jump through, they don't matter. You are a number, a brick in an endless wall, unmemorable, without hope. All you have is only the potential to live and die, and if you become great, inevitably you become a forgotten victim of time, an unknown soldier from an unknown battle. My body has felt like it is a shell filled with sand, empty and unspecial. I race home to eat food that I thought should have tasted better, tuck into bed and listen to music or watch something, surf on my wave of boredom and isolation. Criticisms echoing, inescapably so. The natter of chatter, unescapable. The feelings and the realizations were so inexplicably real. And this is the point where I do something great, isn't it? No, it is a constant whirling cycle, a swirling snowstorm of grey dust, a headache, nothing. 

The days have flashed on the same excruciatingly long and boring, hiding from what I’m facing next, hoping that in this endless predictable cycle something will change, something will be better or at least worth remembering. 

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It’s purgatory and I’m not sure why I am here. 

Now it is time to truly explain. Endless loops with slight differences. Becoming accustomed to something is a wonderful thing in some ways because you can recognize the changes. So on day infinity of my wallowing, I awoke, still like any other day, but I was more awake than usual— the melatonin tablets helped me fall asleep. I began my routine; boil the kettle, pee, wash your face, brew the tea, go to your room, put on your music and makeup, get dressed and drive to school. No matter what people say routines aren't comfortable, they're drudgery. 

I do recall one day when looking in the mirror, something different. Though the same was the same, always seeing myself morose, not unlike any other day. Yet the way the new sunlight kissed and caressed everything it touched in the genial light of morning, especially the billowy curtains, the beauty, was not like any other day. The white billowy curtains, which were actually blue. They were never blue before. I remember so clearly, I had photographs, they were never blue. I remember turning to look behind me, my reflection turning too, and I could clearly see the white billowy curtains of always. Tricks of light are common enough, but even when I held the clearly white curtain up against the mirror it was blue. I was late in my routine and confused. So on I went. 

Vinicius "amnx" Amano via Unsplash

At school each time I saw myself that day, I looked ferociously close for details. Crazed and confused, but nothing I noticed was out of the ordinary. I asked my mother when I arrived home and she didn't see it, which worried me, but more so worried her. Naturally knowing my condition to be relatively stable, a tad hysterical at times, but generally good, she relented. But I did not. I did in fact, resume my rest, though I am constantly berated with odd dreams, still, I rest easy. Strange thing, but nothing to keep me up at night. I was ill the subsequent day, bad soup. No blue curtains though. But I had freckles, freckles on my hands, I did not see them on my skin in life, only on my skin in the mirror. Curious. I rubbed my hands on the cool glass mirror, then I cleaned the mirror, and as I was doing so, I noticed my reflection wink and blink when I hadn’t done so, really bad soup I guess. And then nothing of the sort happened again for a while. 

Though I began seeing the reflections of others doing things their actual selves had not done. Staring at the reflections in the glass in my classrooms I saw different clothes, different motions and emotions but nothing dire; until one day a reflection looked at me, it seemed endless, it was unwavering and the eyes danced with a fiery mischievous light and once I unlatched from their glance I recovered and looked across the room only to realize the person who I stared at was nowhere to be found, and more so, they hadn't been at school at all that day. It wasn't a ghost though, I know that for certain, it was too dreamy, it was only a reflection.

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So I am quite sure recurring dreams exist for a lot of people, I have read Freud and attempted to decode my dreams, but more as a parlour trick than for any real reasons. 

I often dream of a place, it is uneasy, because of the unexpected, but it isn't dangerous— it is of my own thoughts. I can't manipulate it but I realize that in the endless sea of thought I can float, no wave can crush me because I am the origin of that wave.

In this place, it is constantly dusk, purple dusk with a storm on the horizon. The air is sweet and dewy, you can smell the saltwater. The greenery is dark and lush and heavy with moisture. Winding dry dusty paths with rock outline the journey. But most notable is the water, so much water, always there, no matter what happens, it surrounds the dream, acting as a fence. The place has become vaguely familiar, perhaps I have been there, perhaps it is calling out to me, it is too real to have come from my imagination, it exists somewhere on some other level.

I have dreamt of a white lighthouse, looking out to the sea, someone waits for me, they want to show me something or tell me something, I know they're there. A tidal river runs by the lighthouse, small docks and piers are spartanly placed along its banks, the boards creak as the water runs past. Empty white cottages are nudged up on hills between rocks and tall evergreens. Anything from orcas to alligators inhabits the river, swimming in it is not a pleasure, but happens from time to time. Thorny vines and high exposed cliffs of rocks and dirt line one side of the river. There is a beach with a wide path, on one side of the path, the waves lap against the shoreline. It is calm, sometimes it seems to be a lake, with a close cape of land parallel to the beach, but sometimes it is just an endless stormy sea of water, on the other side of the path is a thick treeline, a forest of some sorts, unexplored thus far, but like much of the island, empty but filled with nature. 

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In a strange way it feels like home, it is just vaguely familiar enough to feel comfortable, but it is still greatly unknown. Sometimes you are brought to uncover weird and wonderful things, other times instinct leads you to something. I remember coming across someone sometime; someone I felt drawn to. I had driven to a small town; I remember it, a bookshop, a tavern, a candy store and a small market, all closed. Dusk at a seaside port I had been to before, a valley, the mountain peak I had visited before, hot springs and a causeway, sand dunes and a blue house, friendly old people but an underlying uneasy feeling, melting metal. This place and these memories are sometimes very trivial. But the dream I am recalling had the most magnetic and mysterious pull.

I walked down the dusty path, past the orcas in the tidal river, to the lighthouse. And there he stood. He led me to a grand estate, through trees and wet grass, and outside was a family, strange in some way. They took me to grand white furnished rooms with floor to ceiling windows overlooking the raging sea. I felt as though a part of me belonged with them. Each one individual, each one mesmerizing. Each one an equal, unashamed, strong, sensible and thoughtful. 

They played piano and harp and cello, each of them diligent to the point where they could be almost virtuosic. They carried themselves in a suave European way and they smelled like the essence of nature. They dressed in fine suits, blue or green or blood red, I was part of them, they were part of me, but I awoke and I have never returned to that part of the island, I can still feel them, but I am more alone now. 

Red carnations with cut stems on white background Photo by Karolina Grabowaska from Pexels

The lighthouse beckons but I am on the beach. Finding things I can’t hide from, I am shown only what I am supposed to see, not what I want to see. The memory of this magical place drifts like the tide, I can only recall the things I am meant to remember. At this point, this is all that I am supposed to recall.

I have climbed endless staircases, become lost in grand manor houses, it is a remarkable place. High on the hills, I have even seen the sunrise far in the distance unbeknownst to the dusk of the island. This place belongs to me, it is unexplored and in this way can only be mine, it is a safe place filled with the unknown, only for me, in my thoughts, a peculiar paradise of my mind.