Steve Hutchison (foomf) wrote,
Steve Hutchison

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A dream on the morning of the summer solstice

Dreams are frequently very strange for me.

When I was in my early teens, I started having dreams that were vaguely precognitive. I would be walking down a particular hall at school and meet a particular person whom I had never met before, and be introduced. Then, wondering what that was about, a week later, I'd meet that person. Or, in another instance, I dreamed two weeks before I started at Medford Sr. High that I met Marie Wilson in Spanish class - and that she had gone BLONDE. Marie later became my girlfriend, and she didn't dye her hair until a week before, and I had no reason to know her from anyone at the time, but the trivial conversation stuck with me.
I even kept a dream journal in high school for a while, and at least four of the dreams had flash-forward elements, most especially the one where I was driving a motorcycle. I didn't even WANT a motorcycle until I came back from my first year at college, and the motorcycle dream was amazing because it caught the time of night, the (few) cars on the road, the smell, the aching chill of hitting a cold-air pocket when driving in shirt sleeves, and the fact that in the dream I couldn't SEE the bike.

Often, the dream-flash would be confusing because I couldn't remember when I had had it, and then I'd realise it had been during a class or something - and at the time I didn't realize that I was narcoleptic, and that I sometimes drop into REM sleep in less than a minute.

I hate these kinds of dreams because they're useless. They never showed me anything I could use to help anyone else, or to benefit by. For any reader who knows the Legion of Super-Heroes comic, they're nothing like the Oradoan precognitive power, except for happening in narcoleptic flashes.

After we moved into the Timberlake Drive house, I recall that I was noticing a different kind of dream more often. I would have prolonged, ordinary scenes of life with Penny and sometimes other friends, and they'd be set in very weird places that were like twilight-zone places, but they were profoundly real. One such was a house that was tiny, profoundly worn out, a shabby, worm-eaten, raw-wood shack, but it was somehow part of a huge, multi-roomed place, and that on one side it faced a beautiful park, on the other a rather odd empty lot; the empty lot I have since seen in White Sulfur Springs (just a few weeks ago) but the park I don't recall - it might be one in Portland. Anyway... the profoundly strange part of this wasn't the weakly precognitive bits, but rather that it was so completely vivid, and that I never understood what the intention was of the dream; it was in many ways like dreams Penny would tell me about which she had. Story, location, all highly detailed, but also highly stylized at times. In my dreams, ordinary mundane things, still somewhat stressful though, like moving, those were the content of the dreams. A lot of it was conversations with Penny.
(And she did the same thing, by the way; I woke up one day because she punched me for something dream-Me had said to her, and she didn't believe me for a while that it had been her dream. My dream at that point had been completely vague and non-verbal.)

Maybe I 'caught' her form of vivid dream.

The day she died, I didn't sleep ... I spent the night at Brad and Linda's place, and I blacked out at 4am and crawled out of bed at 6:30, and eventually went home, not wanting to leave the cats (who were confused and sad, and in Faux Paw's sake, quite ill.)

The following Saturday, "on the third day", I fell asleep in the afternoon, an unnaturally warm sunny day, and dreamed something I've conveyed before here.
I dreamed she and I were in an office. It was an office in a garden, by the way, and there wasn't a carpet, it was growing grass, and the desk was a rock slab that was somehow perfectly flat, held by a tree. There were sculptedly gorgeous bushes and shrubs all around, but only when I looked. I was awake, by the way. I knew my body was asleep. Penny wasn't wearing glasses. She looked a lot like she had in college. We were told, by someone very important, that while it wasn't mandatory, that there was an urgent job that only Penny could do, and that it would require her to leave before me. We looked at each other, she hugged me, I said, "It's your choice of course, I'll miss you a lot, but I don't want to hold you back." I knew also that it was understood between us that she had wanted, so much, to accomplish something that mattered, and how her health and her fear of failing had stopped her at various times. She said yes, and I told her I loved her and then woke up. There was a bit more to it, but it doesn't decode or decipher properly.

The next dream, shortly afterwards, was her and I at a field right out of Narnia, walking; the flowers were primarily a yellow-gold ... which now that I think of it was a clue; we had taken the song "Fields of Gold" as an alternate 'our song' when it came out. (We had "Love Stinks" for a while.)
She and I walked up to a gate - a cross between the "Stargate SG1" gates and a megalithic, highly rune-crusted altar stone like in Narnia. We talked, and she said "You can't follow me yet." And walked through the opening of the gate, which was for me a flat stone surface.

Several times in the following months, a year ago, I would dream in a different world, one less shabby-weird than the worn-out-house or the Astoria-unkempt wanderings in the VW (which I found to contain a core of prescience again, as it was in august of 2001 when I had that dream, and the weekend before Penny's cancer surgery in September of 2002 when we went on our last trip to the coast and the roads were being torn up, and we got lost in a strange little area whose roads matched the dream) and that different world was one where Penny didn't die of cancer.

It appears I visit these alternative realities from time to time, when for some reason something builds up.
Penny was born on the autumnal solstice - September 23rd. She would have been 51 1/2 today.

I deliberately didn't set my alarm, though I did leave the radio on, quiet.

And, there we were, again. She wasn't thin, in this dreamspace, but she wasn't huge either, and she had her glasses, but they didn't hide her eyes. She was reading something to me from the net. I don't remember what the place we were in looked like in detail, though I do know it was complete detail. I was cooking something while she read from a laptop while seated at the kitchen table.

The dream shifted places, and we were buying gifts, food, shopping for groceries and pharmaceuticals. Here is where my brain rebelled, as it always does: I asked her if she needed anything as we passed the pharmacy, and she said to check with the pharmacist. He gave me a blue and white box about the right size to hold a large economy size tooth-paste and when I read it, it was a hormonal/palliative cream used to treat cancer. (As far as I know there is no such cream at this time.)

And I was asking Penny about it, "Wait, this won't do any good. You already died from the cancer."
She looked disappointed, a sort of Orpheus and Euridice moment, but not so final, and I got an immense but still distant sense of being loved, and woke up again.

That reality was so solid and real, but it isn't the universe I live in. Or maybe not yet.
I don't know if I want to dream like that again. It doesn't hurt at the time I wake up but it does when I stop to think about it.


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