Sunday, 9 July 2017

Through the wardrobe

I don't care about reality. You have it, you keep it and take care of it, and tell me all about it if you like. I'll pet it a little and pretend to understand, to know what you mean when you say

The real world matters, we all have to live in it

This reality is what counts, this is what we have

I know this is true because I can feel it and see it

It does you good to live in the real world

You have it, have the grand plans and new schemes, have the walk to work and the run to keep up. I don't want it. I won't answer the door to it, or include it in my limited plans for getting through today, for walking free in my own unreal, unseen world.

I'm unrealistic (apparently). I need to do these real-world, fact-based, hard-edged tasks to make everything happen like it's supposed to. Who made these rules? Does it matter if I fit in? Who cares if I do? I don't care, why should you?

Have it to yourself, you like it so much. You cuddle its hard edges and polish it so it shines in the bright, blinding sun pouring in through your uncluttered, shining windows. Have it where everyone can see it and remark how well done you are.

Later, when the sun goes down, plug in the spotlight and shine it on your reality so it can never sit quietly in darkness. Who knows what might happen if you let the night fall? Or if, tip-toeing into new waters, you lit it only with a soft candle instead of a harsh light. What might it look like then?

How would its hard edges change in the flickering from one candle? What might you not be able to see? How would it feel to lose sight of the corners, to see the edges you had felt so often fall away as if they were instead something living and not so accurately measured as what came before?

Would you be afraid? Would you wonder what really sat behind the candle, looking almost as if it moved in the glow?

Would it feel, perhaps, as if the candle hid more than it showed and the dark room behind your beloved reality was really not there at all, had never really been there, had been a clever illusion held in place by what you constructed and lit and admired every day as your own besotted creation.

It's a gentle grip that never lets go. I can't tell you what lies behind the dark or moves within the candle, or what it was that, on looking, had gone before you saw it clearly. Light the candle, it's better than letting the darkness in all at once, and let the room grow past what you expected to find.

And in the morning, as the sun builds behind the glass, look closely to see if your reality is still as you remember.

© Amanda J Harrington 2016

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