Dreams rarely stain my thoughts upon waking, fading back to the wispy fogs of sleep. Lately, however, I have remembered quite a few dreams, and they all seem rather consequential and symbolic, not of the Freudian abstracts but as clearly as a string leading from my heart woven into their pictures and words.
Love seems to be the primary revelation, at least in terms of what I am looking for, hoping for, in a woman. I was a bit surprised, though I cannot disagree, with the qualities of the women in my dreams that are far more important to me than I realized until I gave it some thought. Well, one was more surprising than the other. The first is innocent intimacy. The second is a woman who believes in me.
Innocent intimacy is the less surprising of the two. By innocent intimacy I mean a non-sexual form and in a naive and wholly natural way, free of frippery and pretense. I should amend that though because there is nothing sordid or ignoble about sexual intimacy. Let’s change that to platonic intimacy. Now that that little flub is dealt with, back on topic. Without platonic intimacy, sexual intimacy, while desired much by hormones, cannot truly exist. Not for me, anyway.
In my dream, I was watching an impromptu performance of The Phantom of the Opera with a girl I had been working with in a mall warehouse (I was surprised by the randomness in the dream too). We had been playfully flirting beforehand, and we pooled into the audience as the singing started, her laying down beside where I sat down. We kept glancing at each other, and while the performers were wonderful, we were alone there, everyone else disappeared; then, she whispered, “Can we cuddle?” with only a speckle of a smile, serious and hopeful and sweet. Of course I said yes, and in the precious five seconds we had before reality snatched me back, all I could feel was warmth, though not just the warmth of bodies entangled, but of two hearts as close as they can be to one another and in their unified beats a flame stoked beyond the control of their vessel. The vessel is consumed as the two become one, from synchronous to idiosynchronous, one in heart. Perhaps it is in such intimacy that the warmth spreads outwards more than inwards, straining outward towards our beloved’s heart so that they may meet in person.
Strange though it may be to write, it is a woman who believes in me that surprised me. If I were being honest, I would say that I don’t feel like I have many who believe in me. But being told that by a woman is more than enough to penetrate the walls I have built.
So there I was, in an apartment overlooking the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, two full walls of which were glass windows of around fifteen feet and met to form the corner of the hotel. Needless to say, it was rather luxurious and modern, with high ceilings and a open layout. For some reason, I was there for school, sharing the room with a female friend. As with most of the other students, she went out to have fun for the night while I stayed in to do school work and some writing. She came home late and found me typing away on my computer. While she started to settle in, I turned off my computer and started to get ready for bed, brushing my teeth and changing. I waited as she took her turn to do the same, bumping a small, decorative glass of white pebbles off of its place on a table near the pull-out bed I was using.
I started to pluck them from between the carpet strands as she came out from the bathroom, dressed in only a white crop top that hemmed the bottom of her ribs and a pair of briefs, matching the saturated blue of Rio’s deeper waters. She crawled into her bed, parallel to mine, as I finished picking up the stones and hopped under my covers. After turning out the lights, with only the glow of the city lighting our room, we talked for a while, facing each other on the neighboring edges of our beds. She asked me about how my work and writing went to which I just sighed with some insecure grumblings. And that is when she said it: “I believe in you.” Her blue eye picked up flecks of the street lights, their golden hue as the earlier sunset over the Atlantic. And that was it. She fell asleep, and I rolled to the far edge of my bed and soaked in her faith in me. I awoke swathed in her arms, flanked by her body. No, nothing explicit or anything like that happened.
There is something, I think, to be said about the women of my dreams being… well, in my dreams. At times, I can’t say I think I’ll ever find her, at least not in this world. But I think if I found her each night, I would sleep more easily, and probably a bit more. There would be something elegiac and poetic in finding the promise of love in sleep, the curse of day in waking.