October 21st, 2014

Wordy Dreams

 Most dreams are not in words but in inhabiting a deam-self who does things that are at an angle to the real world. You-skewed. You guys know what I mean. But I narrate my life to myself much of the time, with words. Nasty habit, but I have always done so. And it leaks into my sleep. Sometimes I wake and know that I have been dreaming in words.  Mostly I lose the words completely when I wake up.
A few times a year the taste of the words follows me into the day. But dream words only make dream sense. Even when I can grasp the tail of them, and pull them into day, I have lost what matters. Today I awoke with one bit grasped tight.

'Lumbar penumbra stratagy.'

Well. If any of you can make sense of that please let me know. I don't know if it is plans for a military invasion, or a new solution for backache.It has a certain beauty though.

In other news, it is fall here. Leaves are yellow and falling down. Here at the edge of the water we don't get the brilliant red and orange of the Berkshires. It is a more subdued and a thinner glory. But it is the one I know best. And now we can take Hazel onto the big beach by the Coney Island Boardwalk. She is able to have a good run. She likes to wade and chase the seagulls. I took some pictures last time but they are not any good. They are just an expanse of sand, a stripe of blue, and Hazel, a dot in the distance. Beach pictures are so hard to get right.

Scooby Doo, religious freedom, and book reviews

Reading 'The Elizabethans' by A.N Wilson. I have found the book so exciting that I have to get up and jump around as I proceed, overwhelmed, like a wiggly child.

And I am both delighted and discouraged. There is lot about Marlowe in there, as there should be of course. Sometimes I feel as if I will never know him-- his world is not reachable. And ultimately it is so alien. (And just as well, you really feel the claustrophobic North Korea vibe when you look carefully.)

I also got a lot out of God's Traitors by Jessie Childs. This was a painstakingly researched look at recusant families of the period, and their interactions with early Jesuits. I read that earlier last week. A little at a time, interspersed with Pratchett when it got too much. The book made it seem as if the whole of England was running around in circles knocking down walls and digging up wells. Eventually reading about secret rooms and hidden panels took on a Scooby-Doo quality for me. (Say it with me:'I would have gotten away with it if not for you meddling kids')

We are left with two tropes-- the man suspended by the arms on the dungeon wall, and the running and hiding and finding in Scooby Doo style. Not so funny when you read about Topcliffe and the families who struggled with terrible choices.

And so I am terribly glad for the freedoms I have. But they make it hard to know the people who lived through such times.