Petrichor

For the first time in a very long time, I thought about not getting out of bed when I woke up the other day. Slanted, silver light tilted through a gap between my blinds and the window frame, pale and cool as it skittered across the wall above my bed. Was it a minute or an hour that I laid there? Time. Time means nothing more to a grieving heart than cruelty, the cruelty of a river’s piercing chill as it drags you along, not swift enough to drown you and grant an end nor slow enough to escape the current to the safety of the shore.

What made me stand? Was it that slant of light? That sliver of tepid and distant hope, wan and anemic though it was?

Whatever it was compelled me outside and into my backyard. There, the petrichor, cast upon me by a brisk breeze that trailed it along from hollows in the ground where my dog had hunted out a mole, revived me from dormancy. Damp earth saturated my lungs with vitality long forgotten. The dormant seeds, at last, found somewhere to be planted.

How fast they burst into bloom upon touching that soil. Soon, the petrichor had awoken all my senses to the world, and I noticed that my lilac bush had flowered. From the yard, over the driveway, I bounded to the lilacs to smell them. Raindrops that had gathered in their bells poured from them on to my face, snaking through my bearded cheek to my chin and gripping tight to my nose.

Slumber never takes me for long, but I fear I may have the makings of a cerebral narcoleptic. Granted extenuating circumstances are often to blame, but that it happens at all irks me more than a little bit. We wake to a different world every time.

How long will I be awake this time? What world is to come after I sleep again? What vantages are offered in consciousness that sleep cannot bring? Truth. All of sleep is a lie, and in wakening alone does truth peer us in the eyes as we peer back. And what world we see is irrelevant for it is the only one that exists at that time, and what does not exist cannot matter further than whims and ephemeral pleasures.

I don’t want to leave again. To be rent from the world back to dream, to dream and illusion and phantasm. Brigand fingers, surreptitious and versant, peel at my thoughts. Run, please just run. Faster, run faster. Bare your fangs. Isn’t this worth fighting for?

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