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What it felt like to wake up of a morning and remember I was in Scotland (1998, 2001, 2005, 2010, 2011)

I would ascend from a dream of notable strangeness, dimly recalling that waking would take place soon. I’d vaguely recall the bed, the room, the light creeping in, and then a -pop!- in my chest, like my heart breaking open. The light of it was gold. This was like metallic paint exploding and becoming like powdered pollen, spraying out in the air far and wide. This explosion of joy at least covered the distance as far as the eye could see. It embraced and enfolded the stone hills, buildings, and people within that radius, like casting a wide net from a harpoon gun, and having it descend down on the land. I gathered it back into my heart so everything was included exactly as it had been—the thin, bright sky glinting off windowpanes, parents sitting to breakfast with busy-fingered children, short legged dogs on the march from one scent to the other, students’ crusty eyes checking schedules for their classes while stuffing satchels, council workers setting up reflective barriers for traffic redirection, silent skeletons in the many stony churchyards, swans skimming Duddingston Loch, squirrels and ravens rooting around the abbey ruins, that door painted bright red and the next painted bright yellow, and this one royal blue. All of this, shoved ecstatically in my swollen heart every moment of this day which had begun…if I woke up to discover I was in Scotland.

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