Monday, January 04, 2016

Dream inside the dream

But then he was with me, alive and sweet, apologetic for having died but he kept reassuring me that it hadn’t been my fault, that we could be happy now together. We were opening all the boxes I’d packed away, finding books, finding shirts wrapped around vases—There’s my summer shirt!—laughing in love and disbelief, the nagging undercurrent: how can we manage this, how can we make this work when it’s not real, but it is real, he’s right here, he came back to me; it’s not like last time when I would dream of David coming back, disappointed and upset that I’d sold so much of his furniture (even though he’d told me to do that if I had to, and I had to, I had to get out of that house and start again somewhere), it’s not like that at all, and I’m marveling at our luck, and I’m worrying about Sadie but he says she’s fine, she stays with another couple sometimes, two women who love her and feed her, she’s happy with them; we’re in the back yard and it’s fall, the garden has come in, still so many tomatoes, the kale is tremendous and his truck, his red truck is parked beneath a towering arbor of scuppernong grapes, they’ve fallen and pelted the truck, they’ve stained it, they’ve covered it, I’m laughing and wiping mashed grapes from the hood, What are we going to do with these?, and I swipe the windshield and there, inside, in the passenger seat, is his body, his face turned away, his skin old newspaper, his arms locked around an old duffel, I’m so sorry, I’m moaning, I’m crying on a bed in an old hotel, it’s Puebla, the door is open and someone is across the hall—is it Lois? Is it Wendy?—and I wail facedown into the pillows, half-smothering, and then Sadie is in the room, she’s licking my elbow, shoveling her sweet face under my arm, get up, Daddy, get up.

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