When I was little, I once had a dream where I was lost in a strange house with very thin walls, and dark windows that dimly let me see flickering, indefinite images in the night outside. I remember running through many rooms, and eventually running around the outside of the house, looking for anyone. I remembering feeling frightfully alone for the first time in my life.
The moon had very red, very full lips, and it was mouthing words to me that I could not hear. Surrounding houses all had walls where doors and windows should have been. The streetlamps were colder and dimmer than in real life.
I've just had a birthday; without any real sense of alarm or dismay, I'm tracking a vague, unsettled place in me that remotely feels or remembers this old dream in my waking life today. Now, I'm thoroughly engaged and up to my elbows in my world--a lover, work, some scattered projects, a life--but something most definitely does feel sequestered, held at bay somehow. I don't know what this means. I don't know if this is just ordinary birthday melancholy, or the stirrings of a familiar deeper monster, or something else altogether. We are all of us at sea, I think, and I struggle to remember that it is a minor miracle that any of us make contact with each other at all in the first place.