Last night, I had a dream about you.
You're no stranger to me in that sacred space I breathe in at night, though, you've been one lately.
You used to show up as this illustrious man whom I adored, and often, too. Nine times, you've come through to tuck me into my thoughts and the act is so abstract that I'm not really even sure how I can recall any of it, to be honest. In one of those scenes, we were at my mother's house. You lay your head on my lap. I ran my fingers over your forehead, drawing horizontal lines across it. A Chef Boyardee commercial lit the television. We watched and it was so mundane, so breathtakingly dull.
That was the third dream I had of you.
And again, like I said, last night, I had the ninth.
My alarm has been set for seven o'clock each morning this week and as it chimes in the dark, early hours of the day, I fall back to sleep for another few minutes of quiet rest. This morning, I fought my unsettlement for an hour, tossing in my bed, making imprints in the memory foam. And isn't there something to say about that?
In it, the dream, I mean, you had on that zip-up sweatshirt I can't pinpoint my reason for loving. There was a dark theater. I sat on the floor of it and a love story I'd never seen projected on a screen wide enough for a room of six or seven dozen. I looked around, soon realizing I was the only one in the room. The film played out in pieces. There was this part where a man told the camera advice his mother had given him. Don't hesitate to ask because when you know you know, he said. And he took the woman beside him between his hands and kissed her forehead. I watched because the man in the film was you. And the woman wasn't me.
And then, you were there with me in the theater, but you couldn't remember my name, acted like you'd never been told it. You didn't even know me. On the other side of you sat the woman in the film. She was still and stone-like, breathing shallow and her hands fit, as though the area of them had been calculated for just enough space to fit inside of yours. Your eyes averted the screen for only a minute or two and you scaled me, finished with a question: Who are you? From then on, the dream, a nightmare.
Not a word about the roof or the zoo or the time early in September when I tried to pick you up from that place but instead, got caught on an unlit canyon road. I was frustrated and anxious about how you weren't wearing a jacket and you said through the phone, Court, I'm okay, now let's make you okay and I said okay and then, we were okay, remember it? Well, you didn't in that theatre. Next to you in that movie theatre in my mind, you. didn't. remember it. Instead, you took her calculated hand, pressed it up against your jawline and rested it there and watching the two of you together jarred me so much that I woke immediately.
And I've been sitting here in my bed all morning thinking that if you don't want a place in my dreams, then get out.
And then, I remember the time with the roof and the zoo and the canyon road and I remember that I don't have control over remembering those things, but simply that remembering those things is a part of the life I've been building while you've been around. They're a part of being your self, too, and well, fine if you don't want to remember them, but they happened and the point is I STILL DREAM ABOUT YOU.
And what I'd say if I could get you alone again wouldn't have much to do with any of those things because I really just want to know where the hell you went.
I've had a few years to think you over, and when you disappeared like I never thought you'd have the heart to do, I panicked. And I'm still panicking. I think about why it is that you don't fire me up. Why you call when you should and leave letters in the crease of my front door when you shouldn't.
I wonder if that silent car ride from Salt Lake a while back was your attempt at bowing out and I wonder if I made you do that. I sat there in your driveway that night, thinking, say something to him, and uttered no more than Don't let it be three weeks again before I see you. You nodded. I didn't get out of the car. I didn't put my arms around you like before because I didn't know if you wanted me to. So, you got out of the car, came to my window, and I rolled it down. Let me know when you're home safe, you said. And that was the last conversation I remember us having.
The third week began today.
I think I saw you through a window last Tuesday. And did I ever tell you that I'll make Edelweiss the lullaby I sing to my children each night? Because I meant to.
And the point is, I still have dreams of that illustrious man, so come back soon, would you?