I dreamt of you, this sweating August morning, the sun on my face, and surrounded by cats.It was a pleasant dream, full of the past, before this not so pleasant present,
even took place. A moment, in the beginning of us, at a time, when I had little idea of where we would end up.
Nothing looks the same in fresh daylight. The glare of morning, with its’ bright chatter, brings a detachment to life, a separation of being, and living.
That makes one long for a home, that doesn’t exist. A world that doesn’t spin, but rocks gently, instead.
So, I dreamt of us. And there we sat, face to face, in the back room of your old house,
straddling your husband’s weight bench. A half empty bottle of Captain Morgan, on that bench, between us.
We had run out of mixers, hours before, and were passing the bottle, back and forth. Neither of us could shut up about poetry, it was three am, and we were alive with ideas. Young, and excited, about the things we had not yet written.
But, time is a shape shifter, a remembrance in an old book. Time has her way, of shooting holes in one’s pet illusions. Taunting and teasing, before running off into the shadows, to shout.
To call out, “Marco. Polo. “
A children’s game. One in which, no one remembers the rules.
I was twenty-six, that night, in your old house. I was twenty-six, and I thought going mad was the most poetic thing one could do, with one’s time. Madness, was a romance language, I could never master.
Its conjugations, its sentence structure, eluded me. Yet, I tried my damnedest, and at times, felt downright poetic.
I was forty, when I, finally, went mad. I was forty, and I didn’t know I was mad. Nothing was poetic. It was desperate and silent. Reckless. I became a clenched fist, balled up of destruction. I moved in slow circles, carrying a bed pillow, with which to smother, anything, or anyone, that moved to swiftly.
I went madder than I had anticipated. I was ill-prepared. The game continued on without me, I kept missing my turn, kept losing my place. A year passed. Then, two.
Time became nothing more than a deep sleep. Dreamless, and hollow. The past, eavesdropping on the present. Listening, at that paper thin wall, with a glass pressed to her ear.
My madness left me, as suddenly as she had appeared. Abandoned me, one night, while I slept, twisted in the sheets, curled up with the cats. I wasn’t sorry to see her go.
I was certain, that madness had merely deafened me, certain that you had been shouting in my direction, calling out from the shadows, I listened, for days, months, a year. The silence was nearly, too much for me.
The shadows came up empty.
Time had crept her way in.
Still, I called out softly, just once, “Marco. Polo?”