I lie in bed and closed my eyes, and there I saw many images snap through, one by one, a cinemascope of scenes from a life I was unsure belonged to whom.
While in bed, I observed a later-summer field and watched the sun descend. As the orb crossed my vision, I felt my eyes close and there appeared a traverse. There, as though vibrating and real, stood a crisscross, a veritable beacon for which the symbolism was nearly too on-the-nose to bear.
I noticed all that touched me, all that was around me. In my mind, I saw the blue sky that had framed the field before the sun’s descent, and in that landscape a black bird soared lower than seemed quite well-mannered. The shadow bird came close to my body and I lifted a hand to shield myself, and ducked urgently, a deep bow that felt like a gesture of respect and an acknowledgement of the animal’s message. The shadow whistled a tuneless cry and shot away from me. Even so, I kept my eyes closed and waited for the next image, and the next, to appear.
(I felt the field’s crisp grasses set about in the hot air, sweeping softly and with care around my ankles, and I felt the grit and coarse dirt beneath my naked feet. I was there.)
I have never enjoyed, particularly, the feeling of being in nature, and the field I conjured seemed terribly foreign and I felt that even with a map, I would not know it. I thought to leave, to open my eyes and rejoin my bed, but when I did, there before me again was the traverse that still shone with a kind of out-of-place neon energy, it’s base plunged deep and securely into the spidery and unfamiliar earth beneath it.
I could not escape, eyes closed nor eyes open, the field. The field with its traverse had become a place I no longer only visited, coming and going as I wished. I waited for the cinemascope to change the scene, to move on to a different picture, but it did not.
I sought an escape, and found it in my usual way: a pictured song. I saw a song made of a great uprising of color, aids of memory and prompts for anxieties and thoughts still unformed. I heard the colors coat over themselves, heard their ribbons slap against one another like a sparring event for softened lances made of silk. I watched the tempo and beat struts, I watched meter and verses converge and marry, the vows written by the holy sayer that is music. I watched and my eyes became heavy, too heavy to watch even if the image before me changed, even if it became unstuck. (When the symphony concluded, much later, I opened my eyes to find my pillow tucked under my head, and my dark hair over it like threads tossed in the wind, in a field far away.)