The Bowers House Writer’s Guild Membership 2013
Ellen Davenport/ Bowers House Director, Ann B. Davis, Ellany Tamsen Davve, A.M. Dove, Laura Foreman/ Owner Bowers House Writers Retreat, Becky Harkey, Charles Prier, Sandra Scott/ Writing Guild Facilitator, Sharon Wynns
GUILD POST JUNE 2013 by Ellany Tamsen Davve
I settled into my big comfortable chair, arrived finally in my solitude. The chance to be alone made me feel like a cat with cream on my whiskers. It was a stolen delight, almost forbidden in the luxury of it, a rare treat. But plans almost never go as expected and shortly I fell into a deep sleep. That’s not what I wanted, my drowsy self scolded as I dozed off, then later realized the body knows sometimes what the mind does not.
The dream was vivid and powerful when it came, staying with me even now as I describe it to you. I stood in an oak forest, the trees immense and old. The daylight came to me through bare branches, a blue-green hue as dark heavy storm clouds amassed overhead. I was alone and the wind whipped the coat tails around my calves as I stood wondering where to find shelter. A few rain drops soon became a torrent. I ran still searching for safety, even just a small space to be covered and dry before the death of cold took me down. My eye caught the corners of a roof structure almost hidden by thatch and moss.
I changed course and made for the shelter, arriving just before the full onslaught of the storm. As my hand reached for the door, it opened inward. I gasped with cold, fear, surprise when a man with dark russet hair and beard and piercing green eyes stood in the doorway looking at me. “I believe you are here for me”, he said.
Sometimes in dreams, the rational mind steps in like a narrator and it said to me, “That can’t be true since you don’t really know this man and after all this is a dream” . But the rest of me, my heart, my gut, my feelings, my irrational, unworldly self said it was true. I stepped into the small space, into the dark, found a lantern and matches then stood warming my hands over scarce heat when the wick finally caught fire. “I will stay”, I said. I will be here with you until the storm blows over. Then you may decide when it’s time to leave this place. And if you need, I can show you the way out of the forest and on to the big water. If you want .”
I turned to face him squarely and he stepped forward. I thought he meant to speak, but instead he kept moving toward me. I was not alarmed when he came close enough that I felt his breathe on my face and his eyes held mine. Then he stepped into me and disappeared.
I woke in a start taking a great gulp of air as if I’d been holding my breath. His face stayed in my minds eye and I could still hear the rain pelting the roof in a dull thud, a drum calling up my memory of the long shadows cast by the lantern, the earthen smell of the room, his close presence and my primal response to him. Why did he not light the lamp? Why he was holed up in dark and cold? Why did he think I was there for him, then disappear inside of me? Why was he there?
Years have passed since the dream and each day, still, I feel him. I no longer wonder about the dream’s ending because it was not ending but beginning. He remains with me like something lost and found, hidden yet visible, longing to be known, a reminder.