Monday, May 31, 2010

Revisiting that building

Not the one I mentioned. Another. I have been there for years.

It was a roadhouse once, a century home that a highway cut past and it became a boarding house with a tavern downstairs. I stopped by once but was leery. I was with someone else and wanted to leave quickly in the dream.

Next pass, it had changed hands. It became a bookstore/convenience store. The sort that sold whatever roadside might want and was a way for the owners to justify their book hoarding. Fish bait and ice cream freezers on the main floor with postcards and souvenirs from places not here and rambling maze of floors of dusty books. 4 stories of books and racks of records and CDs and closed doors to split levels where old bedrooms were partly furnished, partly even the flooring and internal walls being pulled apart.

The next dream I stopped by, a historical society had bought it, fixed it up, or started to. There was a tourism front office where there had been the old copper-keyed cash register and the ramshackle piles on shelves, some of which were items for sale, some were owners jackets and umbrellas and newspapers and lunch. Parts were opened. Internal columns were scaled back, woodwork pulled off and structural beams made metal posts for better sight lines. All new lighting. It was nearly glittering. The enclosure was the same space. The outside was spiffier but unmistakably the same red brickwork.

Some parts of the place were run by the coop for historical value, to be renovated back, skipping a century of questionable flophouse living. Part was financed by local business owners who managed to make it a sort of mall. A bit was still a book stall. One was a chic cafe, completely out of character inserted into the dark waincotting box.

This trip the main floor was toned down. It wasn't so close to the open house excitement. The tourism office was still there but getting a lived in look with turn racks of information, floor plants, coat racks. A partition wall had been put up, splitting the space in half. The paint job was darker. The lighting went for moire glass. There were large parts unoccupied, renovations stopped part way. But what was there was complete.

On the 3rd floor where the record racks formerly were was a complete dentistry office. S. was the dentist and she took me in to remove my upper right molars. Part way thru she said I needed a break and it was her lunchtime.

She accompanied me downstairs to the new cafe. It was more heritage-look now, sort of end of 1800s painted wainscotting but with outdoor cafe furniture and a buffet.

It was owned by C. She bustled to greet me. P on seeing me, either worked there as waiter or was an incidental customer and seeing me with the dentist brought me over Italian wedding soup, on the house he said.

Years of the same building and now, greeted as a known person by people I know. This feels like some kind of good shift.

Friday, May 28, 2010

being a mote

I had the sensation of being only a dot in space, no weight, no volume, no dimension, no gravity. The dream was stable for some time. It was comparable to the dream when I was a stone in a field.

Suddenly I felt a stretch and I was two points. I felt enormous with two dimensions floating among stars.

With something like a sound, gravity arrived. I knew which way north was. I had a sudden sense of being with a dispersed self. I knew I had hands and feet as radiant lines. They floated near me.

With something like sound and surprise they connected with zips to hitch hands and feet to arms and legs to the line of spine, and I felt some heavy depth stretch me down. I was falling and widening and I was plooping out width to have full arms, legs and torso and I knew myself to be about 30 feet from the ground, suspended and gaining weight by the second and falling. I could feel the contours of the shape of myself defined as it pressed into bed.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

on the 5th dream of him alive since

On loop I entered and reentered a generic mash up of a funeral parlour. It was a wake. My dad was in the casket. People murmured around. Crowds grew and shrunk. I was aware of soundscape but staring at the tan berber carpet. A figure at my shoulder leaned into my space, looked past me at the casket, chin raised. It was my dad looking at himself. 'by gore, the old knave did it, humph" and he shrugged extra wide, like it was nothing to him but was. And he shuffled off.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Travelling Directionless

In the pre-dawn dream I was walking north down Sussex and saw C who was in conversation. I started chatting with an elderly fellow as I walked with what could be a group or just a loose knot of crowd. I got engaged in conversation with the thin fellow in panama hat. His large white mustache twitched as he talked.

At some point I realized we were further south and west than I expected and started to say my goodbye at stairs going down as the mane quickened his step to help a woman take a walker down the stairs. People were behind and ahead. Way seemed block. I could say my goodbyes at the base of the stairs.

Then I didn't and we were all ushered past a restaurant dining room and lobster tank and I didn't know where we were going but I went and we were all seated in a board room in underground Parliament.

People went around the table introducing themselves and when there was a pause for me to say my name a woman's soft chilled hand went over my mouth and said "she's Pearl. Next." and hissed in my ear that I was not invited.

Some AGM-type formalities of meeting proceeded. It was a book launch, with a dozen assembled. There was a presentation of a book and a break and social time.

I got out of my bag a book and went back to the older gent and told him I realized that the book I was telling him about I had a copy of on me. He insisted he wouldn't buy it since it was my personal copy and then that he would buy it since I was so kind. Then when sales for the main book came, he pulled out his pocket liners and with a bit of mischief said he was flat out. The woman who had clamped her fingers over my mouth looked at me with icicles.

In a later dream, post-dawn, I was walking down the street with J and O and told them about what had transpired in the previous dream then they split off and I bumped into E and she told me she had a group gallery showing. Her neighbour did visual art merging clipped letters of the alphabet into a mixed materials canvas that was largely oil landscapes. But after we parted at the intersection, with snowbanks taller than our heads I realize she had told me everything about the artist of the stall beside hers and nothing about his own.

The snow blew harder in a later dream where I was stuck on a school bus with a driver who improvised the route, skipping the street I lived on. By his odometer was a reading that said it was 5:30 already and he was not yet at my house. He said he'd loop back going to Arnprior first. He wondered if there'd be kids left to pick up by the time he got there. He asked me how long it would take to get there. I named a random amount of time, an hour and a half, not knowing where Arnprior was or if we were headed that way.

Eventually my sense of direction was so muddled that I just dinged the bell to get off and a quarter mile later, he stopped. The snowbanks were twice my height. The white-out soon consumed the bus and the stretch of road. I decided to go back to the last known place and get a phone. Down a lane I decided would be too far, and too easy for me to get lost. I doubled back to the cheese factory but it was dark. Then the church and lights were on. Inside my aunt and cousin and uncle. I asked for a ride home.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Hub and I were staying at a bed and breakfast of sorts. It was a palatial rectangular box, a pale green stucco estate with small white windows on a golf course-sized setting. As we found our way thru the tall corridors, we discovered, most of the house was closed off. The rooms were formal-sterile, tall beds, stale air, a lot of lace and pale colours.

There was something of a dining room buffet. The lady of the house was ensconced in a deep chair at the edge of the formal dark woods of cafe dining tables. With a waiter and crystal and linens, she aimed to turn what remained into something self-sustaining. There were little canapes in the hall and a lot of echo.

We seemed to be the only guests for something set up for dozens for breakfast. She assured us others would come. She explained she was divorced years ago and banned her husband from seeing their 3 kids. Shortly after their divorce she sent them away to private school. She preferred not to have the place to herself for economic reasons only.

I wandered to the grounds which has low swells of hills but were being covered in dandelions. There was a long red wooden bridge over what looked from a distance to be a dry man-made lake. Coming closer, it's bottom was flagstones with little ecosystems between the cracks and a thin veil of water in the deeper parts. Turtles and frogs and rocks were scattered over it. The shoreline was naturalized, or gone to nature. Dandelions grew out of the water taller than on land.

disturbing (content advisory)

I never saw his face. my gaze was down as I sat across the booth from friend A and this guy who was trying to chat her up, pick her up. She cooled from minimal response to ignoring as he talked and he started gesturing on her arm. She pulled back and he kept punctuating with back of fingers rubs down her biceps. I was monitoring and could feel my gut twist. She seemed sure he'd just go away.

She didn't leave but neither would he for lack of response then he turned her in the bench seat and put his arms around her. She started twisting and elbowing him and he grabbed more strongly and pulled her to floor under the table, her back on his front, trying to pull up her shirt. His finger started digging into her stomach. She started fighting back more strongly, grunting and and struggling. I stood and started kicking his head. I kicked until blood was splattering. I kicked until he started to release his grip but his head was a sack of red pulp and she was panting and pulling herself off him.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

the curious incident of the puppy at midday

I was visiting the new puppy at R's place. It fit in a palm, so new that it had fuzz not hair. The belly was pink with black freckles. As I was kneeling, oohing and ahhing and adoring the thing which was wriggling on the living room couch, the doorbell rang. The entryway and door was on the the other side of overstuffed ottomans and burgundy lazy boy chairs but I could see the exchange from the couch.

R came downstairs and answered the door. It was N who presented R with a padded envelope. R made some sort of ah, fabulous, thanks for remembering and said he'd tuck that away in his office immediately and hurried off. N opened his mouth to protest but R was already disappearing into the room on the opposite side of the entryway.

N turned called out and explained he was just dropping that package off en route to a meeting and he really didn't have time to stay. A muffled reply came. R asked him to wait a sec. R was in library across the way, asking him to wait because there was one small matter that would only take a moment in a second.

With R having bustled off, I waved at N past the armchairs and occasional tables of the fairly stuffed room. I lifted the puppy and pointed to it. N noticed then and stepped fully into the foyer, closed the door behind him and came to see me and the pup. He crouched down and started to say something in puppy-talk-tones and scratched the puppy's back and ears and the pup rolled onto its back. And peed. A sure straight stream straight onto N's dress shirt. N's face was a mixture of horror, bewilderment and laughter. He froze. I laughed.

He got flustered. He explained he was on his way to a client and I said it wasn't a problem. I showed him the way to the kitchen as he fussed. I asked him to stay put and got a towel and started blotting water onto the pee on his stomach. I was again kneeling and blotting. N's back was to the second door of the walk-thru kitchen.

R bustled in and froze and began blushing and vehemently apologizing for interrupting as he backed out. N's crinkled brow turned red and we both started saying no, no, that's not what it looked like. I started laughing. I laughed so hard I woke myself up laughing.

Monday, May 10, 2010

too much photoshopping in the day

Every time I looked at A directly he'd freeze. As I looked away, he'd slide out from behind that freeze frame of himself and start in motion. When I glanced back he'd freeze again.

Soon there were a dozen, a dozen and a half copies of A around the foyer in various mid-walking positions.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Clay Reading Clay

The room in NYC in winter hybridized with a neighbour's living room from early 80s contained 5 people in center at the couches, a few more in the periphery.

Wish I could recall all. The poem was read, long lines perhaps 4 stanzas long, extending into real time of dream.

After a silence a male unfamiliar voice from behind my right puffed. "Too simple."

The person beside the reader said, "let me read it" and he took the reading copy and pulled the 3 red clay tablet sculptures and said, "sure but it reads across the columns too" and pointed to the knobs and limpets and coils and read each with a word horizontally across the two columns. He stopped definitively.

The person who critiqued nodded approvingly.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Beasties of the Field

Walking down my father's old lane with a camera and zoom lens I try to follow ants spilling out of the hill. Whenever I get the focus on some, they are dusty hippos in the grass. In the distance, ants.

Among them is a yellow crab spider with one injured limb. It tries to run from the camera and scrambles, flips over the mouth of a rusted cowbell but as it swings, a larger spider within it strikes and stings it. A patch of purple develops on the yellow as it lies fallen. It is not retrieved. K is over my right shoulder and has seen it all, and as she touches the killed spider the purple patch transfers to her. She shrugs it off. Little ole bite for big ole me. No problem. She laughs and goes in the house.

House III

It was a blustery winter day and I was walking south up the street. It was largely a white out. I was knocking on door after door and those that answered, slammed it in my face. I didn't know where I was, only that I was cold and I had sold no eggs. I had a wire basket of eggs that were freezing. As I climbed the next porch, I realized it was O's home and the warm light poured from the door. I asked if he would like some eggs.

We looked down at my wire basket and it had become a birdcage with 3 eggs rolling around at the feet of the rooster. I looked up at him and wondered if he could tell a chicken from a rooster. We looked at each other and after a pause he said, "I'll take a dozen".

I whined, "but I only have 3." He answered "I'll wait." and pulled my shoulder to bring me in. I sat down the cage and he ordered that I sit on the ottoman and read him Purdy until we're ready. "Where?" I asked, trying to scan the ceiling high shelves. He sat in the armchair and pointed. I thought to myself, but that's Tomas Transtromer. "Nope, it's Purdy. Read." he said. And I started to read aloud.

Then there was time lapse and it was spring melt running down the street and sunshine sparkling in it and my hand was on the door, opening it with an empty cage.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

House II

In the house below I know to watch my footing on that half step that runs the width of the room. I sat and watched a movie with O when suddenly the globe fixture over us exploded, imploded and I had shards of glass all in the side of my face, neck, shoulder. O was aghast. He pulled me out of the sofa and up to the light of the screen door then told me to stay put.

I stayed. J came to the door, knocking as she entered and was shocked at the blood and asked where's O? He reentered the room presently having dug out BBQ prong and proceeded to pluck glass from me. Look J, he said, got one and held up a long shard. She did a facepalm and wanted to know why he thought he could fix this.

They began to bicker. I excused myself to a bathroom that in that dream was where the kitchen closet was. I shook the glass from the front of my shirt and from the front and back as I shook, not only broken glass but arm's width pottery. some fell intact, some robin's egg blue broke as it fell, interspersed with premortared brick that fell among the pots, some falling loose, some building little part walls at my feet.

House in Dreams

house from dream
This is a house I've been to a dozen times over 2 or 3 years. It's a dream creation. It is the House of T and O. Often only T is home but sometimes both.

The snowbank I note with the x was where I dreamed I was, in headfirst, up to my knees in snow. I turned into my spotted juvenile seagull and went searching for help for myself. South down the street a block I could see T coming and I began to caw and circle above my feet. T said, why, that's Pearl's coat there and he hauled me out by the ankles. He skidded me along the sidewalk, pushing me ahead of him. I was solid as a board and clunked me up the stairs, took me to the old Queen Anne's chair in the bedroom but I was frozen. He propped me against the wall over it so I would melt into it. He and O conferred in the dark corner of the doorway to the main room. The bedroom was light. I was wrapped in a blanket. O fetched warm things: hot water bottle, foot bath and soup and I could tell they were still there but I was too cold still to move or speak. I began to feel heat as I awoke.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


I was sent to pick up some papers. I have to sign by proxy at a car rental place way down a highway out of town. When I arrived a big Texan man was the manager and asked me if I had a job. I said no. He said, want one? I said yes. He said, you're hired. I said ok and went to his stables to look after his horses. One was born I thought dead. It was curled in the straw gutter without skin. Big rancher told me it was normal. Uncommon but normal. It was a preemie. It would grow skin, just wait. When I came back in a few days it was bigger, had no hair but had a skin coating, eyelids and could move.