|This is Lori Landau.|
She is working on a book of
dream poems and illustrations.
This is my friend Lori Landau. She and I have been friends for a long (long) time. Among many things, Lori is a columnist at Technorati (Lifestyle: Social Goodness) and shows and sells her photography and jewlrey at the Open Center, NYC.
As teens Lori and I wrote endless poetry together, but she has continued to work on her craft and grow as a poet, while I have veered in other directions (she has also forked and veered, but has taken her poetry with her).
And, the truth is, few other's poems move me the way Lori's do.
So, when, I found a poem of hers -- Dream Five -- in my email box the other day like a small gift, I did what I always do: I coveted it.
Her poems make me want to eat them, drink them in. I have tried once or twice to suck them up through the computer screen but the glass intervenes.
So this morning, I did the next best thing. I sat down in front of my computer, turned my webcam on and read the words aloud, hoping by doing so, I could somehow send them into the universe in just the way I heard them in my head and have you understand.
I sent the vlog to Lori and asked if I might post my reading of Dream Five here and she said yes. First I will post the written version below.
|Mixed media dream dog by Lori Landau.|
The plane has already taken off but I am unseated. The rows are full of travelers, settling in, gazing out windows, opening books, leaning back, eyes closed, to listen to iPods. I pass by them on my way to the doorway that separates coach from a part of the plane I never knew existed but enter anyway. The thrust of the plane overcomes the drag and the plane is pushed up through the bright air. I am in some type cargo space, stripped clean of carpet and seating and storage. The floor is whitewashed, with blackened steel planks, held down by rivets and antique fasteners. It is the type of place that in another time might have housed sturdy parts: landing gears, propellers, spare luggage bins, but as of now, it is empty, save for two seats that are anchored to raw metal and facing me from across a divide. They are slatted chairs like you’d find at a movie theater or a ballgame, attached at the legs and bolted to the floor with antique studs. No safety belts, just old-fashioned straps made to wind around knees and waists like a harness, clumsily buckled, like arms that are poised to grab hold. The whole thing feels like a throwback to the 40s, like some kind of old military jet, it hums with the purgatory air of a waiting room. By the force of motion, I know we’re ascending. The plane shifts then stabilizes, and I eye the two empty seats, deciding whether or not they will hold me to gravity, when I see that my two long-dead dogs, Annie and Gypsy, who are very much alive, are here, just a few steps from the sealed exit door. To see a dog in your dream symbolizes intuition, loyalty, protection, two must be doubly so. I know this as well as I know that I am dreaming. I am overjoyed to see them, but I am aware that in waking life they are still dead. I realize that they are here to tell me something I’ve forgotten, some important information that has slumbered long within me. I look out the windows of the plane to see what direction we are going in, to assess the likelihood of turbulance, to see if the plane is trailing some message, skywriting symbols that will decipher why I am here, and where I am going, and I see through the cold glass what has been there all along, the altitude of blue sky and everything beyond, and I am flying through it, carried like Dorothy hurtling toward Oz ,holding on by my feet, rooted to the unseen, to that which has come before and all that is yet to come, soaring toward the unknown without a safety net, flying far over the articulation of earth, away from the bent elbows of women squatting long over muddy water, over corrugated fences and bitter branches weighed down by leaves and birdsong, over the long slow trains that run past crumbling walls etched with graffiti, lifting over the hinge of the horizon, on my way to waking.