I woke slowly from the nightmare, not recognizing it as such at first, its breath heavy on me for a long time after. We had thrown off the covers in the evening heat, but at four in the morning I was chilled. The dread lingers.
A hot springs, hot water and cold water, acquaintances and strangers, on the verge of trust that never materialized. Nothing happened in this dream, you understand. Finally my clothes were off, and everyone else's were back on, and I was ridiculous. And I had always been ridiculous, have always been ridiculous, a laughingstock, trying to make communities where no communities could exist, reaching for intimacies with people who wanted no part of me, hoping that utopia would resolve the problem. Doubly ridiculous, because the problem is what makes utopia impossible in the first place. Like baboons, we move restlessly, and squabble endlessly, until the hierarchy is clear. All I want. All I want is everything. All I want is for everyone, without exception, to recognize that I am the most important person in the world.
A nightmare of wanting: all that happened was that the dream stubbornly refused to resolve into an erotic one. Everyone had hesitations, and the night was dwindling, and the heat was going out of the water, and what had looked like it was going to be acceptance vanished. And I, stranded in the flesh, a great naked whale on the beach, suffocating under my own weight. Hundred-pound lungs unable to fill. Hard sand grinding into my flesh.
Well. It's only a dream, only a dream. But I am truly defeated, stranded, defenseless. I am too huge and naked for this world. I don't belong here. I'm not wanted here.
But I linger on. Why? My huge heart keeps beating, the blood keeps rushing. At each clutch of the chamber my blood spurts out to Asia and Africa. My blood is the world's circulation: the planet throbs with my heartbeat. I'm necessary in ways I can't imagine, perhaps. The folly is in supposing my necessity and my desires have anything to do with each other.
Still I'm shaken, old, feeble, chilled. I wish it was all over. I'm ready for a new dream.