It started with a song. With many songs, luring us away from our quotidian world and into some sort of liminal space, some sort of dangerous borderlands, a place it’s easy to get lost in.
There have been so songs. So many beginnings, and so many endings. Each one is a different lifetime, a different reinvention, a different place. And each one, eventually, descends into silence.
Every time we fall apart, I always dream about us being pushed, somehow, back together. Always in places we have been, or could be – rooms and stairwells and churches and wooded paths.
Last time I dreamt that you moved into the apartment next to mine, and I listened obsessively at the walls for any smudged sound of you. I watched out rain-streaked windows for a glimpse of your back between the apartment door and the car. I sat on the floor just to feel the brief vibration of your footfall on the landing.
In this latest dream, we were in a room together. A boarding house, perhaps – an old room with a vaulted ceiling and worn wooden floors. I had a special power, the ability to make the air around me cold, and I chilled you, because it was the only way I could touch you. I chilled you so much that you put on an oversized knitted sweater, swam in it as you pointedly ignored me and I desperately sent my waves of cold to slam into your body. Then we had to leave, I don’t know why, but we were packing, and you looked at me, and walked over to you and suddenly you entangled me in all of those threads. I dreamt that I left my body, and saw you smiling as we swirled into one thread-bound creature.
If you believe that dreams are randomly processed images of a chaotic brain, then these dreams are wishful thinking. But I believe you dream similarly, I believe that in our dreams, we are able to give to each other, and know that we are giving to each other, a sense of togetherness that our waking minds never allow. And I believe that for the same reason a friend once told me he believed in God – because I have to.
I have to believe that in our dream state, we do connect. In our dream state, we can give each other all the things that our waking minds, with all their seething complications, won’t allow.
And I think this last dream was the truest. I didn’t know how to touch you, so I instead I chilled you. You didn’t know how to see me, so instead you became so blind that I ceased to exist in any corporeal form – I was only a shiver. And right at the end, right when my coldness and your blindness might have driven us apart, suddenly you could see, and I could touch, and we sewed up together in a cacophony of brightly-colored threads.
That’s how I’ll remember you. In dreams, and in music.