Thursday, July 19, 2007

Dream on a Sunday morning

Dream on a Sunday morning after too much vodka:

Tacoma (a lovely seaside town in Italy), the train glides in and I am attending (with friends) some theater piece at the Pantages. Not an opera. This was miraculously touching. A tropical theme? Perhaps the most amazing thing was the emergence from retirement of Tyrone Power who, in a costume somewhere between a shaman and a white explorer (high topee? Bengal Lancer?), totters through the lead. I am distracted from the drama by trying to calculate how old he must be (97?). The play (or whatever it is) manifests in a visual symbol: some attendant behind the visionary (Power) carries a long stem on which is either some ornamental symbol (like a parasol carried behind a mandarin) or a genuine flowering bush, white blossoms emerging from the white stem. But in the course of the journey, the blossoms evolve (bloom? spring? decay?) into something multi-colored, intricate, patterned, mandalas – or is it merely diseased, decayed, impure? In any case, the play’s end appears to culminate when (though they still have not fallen) the blossoms are all transformed into greens and reds and pale blues and yellows. Touching. But then there is another scene, or final tableau, and the colors have all been restored to their initial white – for some reason this is unbearably poignant (though we argue over the meaning of the image: the ideals are not dead? the soul returns and thrives beneath the creative hurly-burly of impulses resolved?), and our view is obstructed by the antique and elaborate construction of the hall: yet we can see him there, in the limelight, with that symbolic pure blossom behind him (a real flower? a prop? an illusion? a greater, nobler truth?). Though tearing up with it, we argue, and no one shushes us. (Perhaps it’s just a dress rehearsal.) I woke up with the script of the play clear in my head, and told myself to write it down, quickly … and didn’t.

Next night: at a pagan gathering, glad to see so many old friends (Andras and Deirdre conspicuous), hugged a lot but mostly everyone is getting food in heavily timbered shelters and in fact it is pouring, muddy and cold (this is because I sleep with a fan focused on the bed), and I’m not really happy to be there at all. But I am willing to sacrifice to see all these people … half of whom I don’t even know … yet.

Next night: an arranged marriage in medieval times, or is it a theater staging a pageant to recall those times? (a la Bruges, which I was discussing last night with Cedric, who is bound thither), somehow I am to be proxy for the bride, which is okay because the groom is (or is being sung by) Mariusz Kwiecien, which is certainly exciting news, and yet at the same time I have not shaved off my beard (neither, thank heavens, has he) and the awkwardness of appearing thus as a bride (even a proxy bride) in public strikes me as all wrong, even outrageous, not to mention the fact that I am not sure (cannot believe) Mariusz knows who is going to be under the veil (and, concomitantly, in the bed), and I am heartily embarrassed to be presenting my aged, decrepit body naked (or veiled) before his splendor, and at the last moment I try to get out of it. Then I wake up, figure what the hell? and let my drowsy brain complete the erotic fantasy I never seem to get around to when actually dreaming. (Cue: baritone aria from Halka.)

1 comment:

Yvonne said...

You write beautifully... shades of Patrick Leigh Fermor or Lawrence Durrell. Welcome to the blogosphere, and keep up the good work.