Thursday, 22 January 2015

Dinner with The Queen


I was in my 70's dated living room, my bare toes curling and combing through the avocado wool shag. A ring sounded from the rotary phone …. no caller ID back then. Making my way to the table by the door to lift the receiver up off its cradle and the two clear buttons, stretching the curly cable and bringing the heavy mocha coloured blower to my ear. A woman's voice very sweet sounding through the wire was conjuring an emotion in me that  would describe as GLEE. I recall feeling more excited and tickled by what she was saying than i have felt in a long long long while. I was jumping up and down the way little girls and boys do. It was the Queen of England you see. She was saying how much she enjoyed my company and that she was going to hold a dinner in my honour. Ta da !!!!! Now it is my impression from the dream that this is not "our" present day queen Liz number 2 but the Elizabeth I. She was calling me from another time. Regardless , she is going to hold a dinner in my honour !!! My friends and I did a little dance of joy there in the living room next to the macrame owl wall hanging. "I JUST GOT A CALL FROM THE QUEEN….. THE QUEEN !!  WAHEY HEEE HEEE !!!!!! "

Then a sort of cloud came rolling over suddenly changing the mood and whole atmosphere and a strong anxiety entered me. There was a hand on my back pushing me out f the house and down the steps. I recall a dark blue hooded sweatshirt , a big fat belly and an ill intent connected to the hand that forced forward. I was in danger of some sort. I found myself out on the gravel driveway sitting on the bottom step at the base of the wooden porch. There was no more dancing for joy. I was trying to hold myself together… hold it together… for some unapparent reason. I felt confused. The heavy handed big bellied hoody man, my oppressor was leaning on his pick up truck.

It was warm out, it was summer, there was dust from the gravel and dirt drive in the air. I can see the sneakers and denim jean legs of the man leaning on the truck. Still sat on the bottom step my feet on the gravel, I held a rock in one hand and a bottle of champagne in the other. I placed the champagne down on its side onto the rock surface of the drive. Rather than "popping" or "opening" this bottle as one normally would do, I went about "getting into it" by bashing the belly of bottle (lots of bellies in this dream) with the rock. I bashed it over and over in the same spot until a whole formed and the shattered chunks of glass caved in and formed and opening. The drink was midnight blue, It was a dark frozen lake that I had broken through. A whole in a wast sea of ice. The sea horses below in their sleepy algae meadows dreaming and snoring up effervescence that delivers their lucid dreams to the surface….popping… off gassing… whispering tales from the deep. The moon was shinning through the shards of ice turning them crystalline and seemingly melting, they were not melting, and not as kind as ice for they would cut your voice out if were to swallow them. I took up a spoon and very slowly, very carefully dipped it in to the cold dark fizzy lake and let the drink sift its way out of the shards and spill itself clear onto my spoon. I ladled the celebratory sips into a glass cup who's rim was powdered by the heavy dust from the summery driveway, dust the pick up truck kicked up. I was able produce one clear drink worthy of a toast. I wiped the dust from the rim with the sleeve of my sweatshirt. I don't recall the sensation of drinking seahorse dreams. 

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

One Mean Labradoodle

I was watching a man walk his dog along a narrow cobble stone road that was winding through a small English village. The dog was a Labradoodle the size of a Great Dane. The ‘doodle was yanking the man along. Bad dog... bad dog owner !!!!   The road became a bridge. The bridge arched over the front garden of a terraced house below. There was a curly-haired woman working in the garden. Oddly, her hair was the same colour,texture and curl as the ‘doodle. She was the height of the base of the bridge and was stood with her back to it as she admired her garden.  As the dog walked his owner over the bridge he stopped to sniff out the curly hair of this woman. Sniff sniff sniff.... and then the ‘doodle opened up his massive jaw and clamped his teeth around the back of the woman's head and sounded a blood curdling growl! The woman yelped and spun around escaping the clenched jaw of the mad dog. In a knee jerk reaction she instantly swatted the nose of the dog and made a hollow thwap-ing sound. The dog now furious leapt off the bridge onto the woman, pulling the dog owner by the leash down in on top of them both. What a mess. The woman started screaming. The ‘doodle was growling, clawing all over her, snapping his jaws, his mouth foaming, and eventually sunk his teeth into the back of her neck. The man on the end of the leash was standing there paralysed with fear. He did, however, manage to whimper out a limp command that was lost to all but the worm who was burrowing under his foot. The woman's husband leapt up from his La-Z-Boy, rushed out of the front door of the little terraced house and proceeded to pull on the rear of the dog in efforts to release his hysterical wife from the ‘doodle’s grip. I became aware at that moment that I was watching this event from afar... perhaps from across the street or from the window of the parallel house. I was not in this situation… I was engaged in keen observation. With this realisation, my heart rate increased. I watched the mad dog, the hysterical woman and the hopeless men trying save this woman. I saw that the men are going about this all in the wrong way and were only making things worse. I tried to yell out from my position in the nosebleeds "In the jaw! In the jaw!", but my voice would not come out of my mouth. "In the jaw!!!” Still no sound. I wanted the men to pry his jaw open or punch the dog on the nose. These stupid men; the poor woman; the dumb dog! I was mute. Despite opening my mouth to cry out, I had no voice. I could be of no help; I became frantic! I pulled myself out of the dream and woke up panting rapidly....

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

AC/DC Dust Devil

I was travelling... I had my suitcases with me.  I was dragging my roller bags across huge slabs of bedrock in a dry river bed. It was hot. The rock was grey. The river was enormous! I came across a few pools that looked as though they were deep enough for swimming. The water was emerald and blue like a calico turquoise stone. I didn't swim. I passed the waters by and continued travelling down the river bed until I came across a big rock ‘n’ roll stage. I stood by the side of the stage facing a huge audience which wound down the river bed. AC/DC were on the stage and rocking their socks off. A gust of wind picked up and a dust devil formed in the front row of the audience. The dust devil spun faster and faster, and grew larger and larger until the devil became a tornado. The audience scattered and the band dispersed. My suitcase was ripped from me by the current. I scurried off to find shelter. I came across an institutional looking building, like a library or a police station that was built in the 1970's. It was made out of cement and was very square and grey. The inside was just as sterile and grey as the outside and was lit with fluorescent lights. A woman was standing at the end of the hall wearing what seemed like every item of clothing from my suitcase. I passed by her and turned to enter a room on the right. Inside the room was a hotel room. It was dimly lit with shades of the colour brown everywhere. An old friend of mine named Jim was standing at the dry bar with no clothes on. Apparently, he was in the process of getting dressed but he stood there for a brief moment so that I could catch a glimpse of his frontal landscape. Once I had blinked him up and down he pulled his pants on. Bit odd. It was a Friday night and I wanted to make plans. I was in a city... which city, I do not know. I pulled out my crappy little phone and called my friend Emma in the hope that she would want to meet up for an evening of food and drink. She picked up the phone. "What are you guys doing tonight?" I asked. She began to respond, and as she spoke I could see in mind the red truck that she was sitting in on a dirt road. Her voice broke up and the connection was lost. I called back "What are you guys doing tonight?" The red truck, her voice and then the connection lost. I called back "What are you doing tonight?” Again, the red truck ...her voice... the connection lost. I spent the next what-seemed-like-forever in this pattern. I even woke up and fell asleep again to the same loop... "What are you doing tonight?" The red truck...her voice... the connection lost. That loop could still be playing for all I know.

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Long Live the Almighty E

The lead singer, and character extraordinaire of the band EELS... appropriately named E... asked me to look after his house while he was out of town. Of course, this was no problem. I planned to drop in and water the plants, feed the fish, etc. My first visit to the house revealed that E lives in a big wooden house at the bottom of a long sloping drive. The grounds were very shaded and there was a lot of plant life sprawling around and towering over the house. It must have been night-time because everything was dimly lit. I entered the house... how I don't know.  The house is quiet... everything is still. Standing just inside the entrance of the house, there is a tangible sense of sorrow in the air… like I am standing in the heart of a home that is weeping... the air is heavy with the vapour of its tears. I don't know what or why, but I know something serious is transpiring here. I make my way around the house quietly. There is a glow like candles are burning. I do not turn on the lights. I don't remember much about the house… but I do recall going into a screen porch area. To my surprise I found E lying there on a bench. He looked as though he was sleeping. This worried me. He was meant to be out of town. I approached him slowly and quietly, so as to not shock him. As I came nearer to him, I could feel a sense of draining... like the Earth’s battery was running on empty...a feeble hum.... a light bulb nearly burnt out. I knelt down beside him and examined him with my eyes first. He just looked asleep. In a low soft voice I said his name "E". I placed my hand on his arm. His skin was cool. I said again "E". Something was wrong. I placed my fingers on his neck to check his pulse, and just like the light bulb... it was faint. Something was seriously wrong with him. I didn't know what or how long he had been there for, but I knew he was suffering. He was unconscious and as far as I could tell, he was on death's door.  I didn't think. I filled a spoon with a syrupy concoction that I knew would end his discomfort and bring him peace. I spoon fed him the poison and left him there to die.

 A day went by. Two days went by. I knew E was back at his house lifeless with no one to care for him. I wasn't sure what I had done but I knew I had to Remove The Body. What?! How did I get into this position? Every waking moment became heavy with the thought of E lying there dead in his house.... decomposing. Holy Fuck!!!  I was avoiding the situation. I was nervous. I couldn't face it but I knew I had to. Day three passes. Day four. Where do I take him?  How do I explain this? Did I do something wrong? Why didn't I call a doctor? Did I kill E? They are going to do a biopsy on him and find the poison and put me in jail!! Holy Fuck!

 On the fifth day since E's death, I found myself in the presence of two of my brothers. I was still nervously avoiding the reality that lay waiting for me in the big wooden house. I couldn’t help myself. I had to tell my brother. I asked him what I should do. My brother said that I have to take him to the funeral home and pay for a casket and that it would cost me $500. $500?!?!!! Why do I have to pay $500? I was really upset about that. I decided to bite the bullet and take care of this matter once and for all.

 I went back to the big house. I was so scared that he was going to be putrid. Lord knows what I would find.  The house was still dimly lit like it was when I found E five days ago. I went to the covered porch. There was a plywood casket there now where I had left him. He was inside the casket. I could not smell anything unsavoury. For that, I was relieved. I approached the plywood box. Slowly, I lifted the lid. There he was. Still and cold and blue. He was beautiful. So beautiful. My heart sank. Why didn't I call a doctor? Why did I poison him? You are going to jail… they are going to find the poison... you are going to jail for murder... my heart started pounding in my chest!! Oh God NO! I was in a real panic.

  The gentle hand of my mind stroked me softly awake, saying shhhhhh.. it’s just a dream...just a dream... just a dream..."Oh God, thank God, thank God". It was just a dream. That was a close one!! Lord knows, I don't need to be the girl who poisons the elder statesman of indie rock. Long Live The Almighty E.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Jack Rabbit

i was in a very sterile and dry dressing room of the music venue where i was about to play. It looked like a room in a mormon church... carpeted with this brownish orange kind of carpet with painted brick walls and an intercom in the room. It was very warm and still.... dehydrating.. boring and depressing. No couch. I was in that holding pattern in the hours between soundcheck and the show. Feeling at a losse end I decided to get in my car and look for some food. I don't know what city i was in and i'm  sure i didn't know the city well because i was getting caught on all of these one way streets. I wasn't finding the restaurant i wanted either and i was getting frustrated. While stuck on this one way system,  i passed by a clothing store that looked tempting and I wanted to go in. I stopped the car and parked up. As i was getting out of my car i looked at my watch to find that it was getting nearer to showtime and i was pushing it to get back in time to comfortably prepare. I saw this dress in the window though and the temptation was too strong... so i went in. I got lost in shopping. Everytime i felt the tug of showtime I ignored it and kept shopping . It was properly stressful. I don't know why i did that. I didn't go back to the venue. I didn't play the show. I found myself  next in my fathers closet where all if his clothes were hanging. I didn't recognise the room i was in ... just the suits sweaters and shoes. The closet was wooden and well crafted and there was stone and the lighting was gentle and warm. This was a large walk in closet . I approached the mirror.  A garment hanging to my left caught my eye. It was a womans' blouse. I had never seen it before but i knew instinctively that it once belonged to my mother. It was a grey sort of purple silk and looked vintage chinese. It was cut off around the bottom  and was left unhemmed . I sorted further into the rack of garments to see if i could more. There were several more vintage tops that belonged to my mom. One was particularly beautiful and i became immediately attached to it. I pulled out my cell phone to call my dad and  ask him if i could have it. I didn't have reception in there so i had to leave the closet to get a signal. As soon as i started to venture i failed to recognise my surroundings. I began to doubt that would be able to find my way back to my dads closet. Still trying to make the call i started up a hill. I was on the outskirts now. It was night and quite cool fresh and wet out. The mist was hanging in the grass. I was walking up a dirt path. Atlast i was able to place the call. My Fathers voice at the other end answered by saying .. "It was my birthday"... and repeated..." you missed my birthday" and again and again... thats all he was saying. It was hard to squeeze in the query about my mothers garments. I don't know why i was trying. My Fathers voice again shaping the words "my birthday". Suddenly a large white Jack Rabbit came into the view of my left eye. The rabbit crossed my path and found itself in a shaft of light that stopped it in its tracks.  Just as the It came to a standstill... Its rear end split open , a big gash,  and all of its entrails came spilling out like a mystery blend of meats and maggots being churned out of a meat grinder ... and then its urine...and then its blood. The poor rabbit looked so sad... so exposed....defiled...abandoned... alone... and confused... not to mention in pain. His fur was stained pink from the blood infused urine. My eyes fixed on the rabbit. I dropped my phone as my heart sank and  my fathers voice echoed  "my birthday... my birthday...my birthday...my birthday..my birthday..................................................................................."

Friday, 7 June 2013

The Village Unaware

I found myself on a hill looking over a small village. It was dusk. The sky was lit up with every shade of purple pink and tangerine !  Beyond the village was the sea. The sun was setting  into that sea. As it seemed from where i was standing, an enormous blanket of  fog was unfolding from beyond the sun. It swaddled the sinking sun as it passed muting the light and bringing in early darkness. The earth cooled and a cold breeze picked up. The suns absence gave the moon a chance to shine which  revealed itself in my shadow casting long in front of me as i faced the sea. I set my gaze on the crawling fog as it covered softly the village houses and the clock tower. As the fog reached the foot of the hill that  held my path, it reached out two of it's arms and stretched them up the hill toward me. I watched in wonder as they climbed. My shadow seemed to become darker, more dense and defined. I saw then, the arms of my shadow reach upwards and extend themselves toward the outstretched hands of the fog as though they were calling to each other. I had to look down at my own hands to see if they had prompted this motion and created this shape. But no, My hands were in my pockets. My eyes widened and my pulse quickened. What was happening ? The cold air swept over my face and reddened my cheeks. My nose began to run. Steady on, the fog stretched its arms upward to those of my shadow. Just as the two came into contact the hands of the fog became defined as strong wielding hands... as though they were the hands of a God. These intricate and incredible instruments took hold of my shadows hands. Upon contact, my shadow turned to black water but retained its shape and held fast to the fog. In an Instant the vast blanket  that stretched from my watery arms to the endless lengths of the sea DROPPED !! !!! SPLAAAASH !!!!! SWWWAAAAAAAMP !!!!!! The fog, no longer a blanket of pearly mist but a massive, heavy sheet of water collapsed and flooded the valley!!! As this happened the arms of the shifting fog held fast to my shadow and my shadow held fast to me and they yanked me swiftly down the hill by my feet and into the village waters !!!!!  I was swept down the village streets past the post office and the corner store. I tried to hold on to a fire hydrant. At last I gave in to the flow. Soon enough the current slowed. Every house in the village was lit up. Families were sitting around the dinner tables... doing the dishes.. .children were jumping on beds. Everyone was carrying on as though nothing had transpired. The interiors of the houses were untouched by the water. I looked into every home to see what they were doing. I swam through the iron gates of the church and through the grave yard. I swam over tombstones and flowers and felt the rough iron bars on the graveyard gates as i left.  I was the only one out in the flood.  I heard the bell tower chime 7 times and mused at the way the water had transformed the sound. I then realised i was breathing... water in ...and water out of my lungs. This is always a good sign. I took it in slow.. I took it in deep. I held it in and let it out and with reverence. I felt warm. I felt safe. I felt at peace, happy and present as i held to the short hand of the tall village clock and watched over the Village Unaware.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

The Plot of the Pancake and the Pearl (starring Chris Thile)

I was at some sort of music festival on a hot summer's night. All sorts of my musical friends were there;  Aoife O'Donovan was there(  http://www.aoifeodonovan.com/  ). She was teaching a group of girls one of my songs and explaining to them the meaning of the lyrics. This is a song that does not exist in wake life as far as I know, because I did not recognise it. I was walking past the group as she was telling the girls that the lyric basically means that "you don't have to compromise". I stopped to correct her... "the lyric means that you do have to compromise". I travelled on.  It was a balmy electric evening. Lots of energy in the air and people to see doing adventurous things.  I came across a camp that was quite tramp-looking and I found my friends The Punch Brothers (  http://www.punchbrothers.com/  ) all standing around a fire burning in a metal trash can. Inside the fire they had rigged up an old pot that was filled with hot oil. I huddled in with the boys round the fire. Chris Thile, the leader of the band, poured into the hot oil a big portion of pancake batter. The oil engulfed it. We all watched with our eyes peeled. Chris took some sort of pancake fluffing tool and plunged into the oil and down into the transforming batter. He started to sort of rake the batter upwards to encourage the pancake to fluff and rise. He looked at me and winked. I took a single white pearl out of my pocket and dropped it into the batter just as the consistency of the batter stiffened and swallowed the pearl. Chris pulled the pancake out of the oil. We were all utterly convinced that this was the work of genius. A friend of Aoife's who had been learning my song came swiftly by and snatched the pancake up and ran off. We all grinned and nodded at each other like our plan had worked. Later on I came across Aoife and she said that her friend had died at the festival. Apparently, she was eating a pancake and a pearl got lodged up her nose and she died. That all seemed perfectly reasonable to me and I was happy to have a dance with Mr. Thile to some old-timer music. We all danced and danced  until couches and beds filled the room and it was time to sleep. Chris slept on a wooden pallet that we laid down for him. The next thing I knew, I was telling a room full of people about the plot of the pancake and the pearl in a stand-up comedy act. It was working.. the people were laughing even though the stage was too far away and there were loads of book cases obstructing their view of me. Chris was distracting them as well with all sorts of nonsense that I cannot recall. I then stepped outside and found myself in my home town. It was day time and things around my village were looking absolutely picturesque. The folks of the town were all out dining under the oak trees in restaurants that I had never seen before. The food was something out of a dream and draped everywhere. Everyone was dressed in their Sunday Best, looking like they were in the year 1910. I noticed "wow everyone is dressed old fashioned but with a modern twist ", so many beautiful young women in their dresses and hair styles. The day was warm and sultry, colourful and luscious out. I walked between the clusters of people dining in the dry grass, past a train coach diner. I looked down at my arms. They were badly sunburnt.