Psychopomp.

I have a hangover this morning.

But last night, I had an interesting dream.

Last night, I sat in front of His altar and drank.

But just before going to bed and eventually falling asleep, I asked for His guidance.

I remember saying aloud: Where You lead, I will follow.

And this is where He led me…

I was at some sort of event – a concert! – and I was looking for my father.  My father was either supposed to meet me at this event, or somehow, I had realized that my father was there, and I went looking for him. I knew my mother would be with him, but for some reason, I wasn’t balking at seeing her, as I normally would have.

Something terrible had happened, and I’d wanted to make certain she was OK.

As well, another strange thing was that I wasn’t attending this event with (my husband).

Instead, I was attending this event with a man who seemed to be either my boyfriend or my lover. He was a young, handsome man – who seemed way out of my league! – waifishly slender, with long light brown hair and a goatee.  He was utterly charming and he seemed eager to be with me; I was rather taken aback with the attention.  (Based upon his reactions to me I figured this was either a new relationship…or we hadn’t seen each other in quite a while. He gave off such a powerful energetic vibe of joyful sensuality.)

At any rate, this man – my lover –was helping me look for my mother. He agreeably and dutifully informed me that he was there to help me find her.  That was his primary goal, he’d told me.

Then I realized that the time had come when my father would be arriving (though I don’t know how I knew when my father would arrive, I just knew) so I went immediately to the front gate, as I suddenly remembered that this was a ticketed event.  My father (or maybe my mother?) needed a ticket, so I wondered if that might have been the reason that we had to meet.

Upon reaching the front gate, there was a LOT of people!

The sheer size of the crowd would have unhinged me if I was still socially anxious in crowds, but thankfully, upon checking myself inwardly, I realized that I wasn’t feeling the slightest bit nervous or anxious in any way.  Scanning the crowds at the front gate, I suddenly recalled having been to this event and the venue several times before, and therefore, I chalked that up to being the probable reason that I felt entirely at ease.

Though, the most unusual part of the dream involved my feelings about my mother:  In reality, my mother and I are and always have been mutually and irrevocably estranged, but in this dream, I was remarkably excited about seeing my mother as well as deeply concerned for her well-being.

When I finally found my mother in the crowd, she looked lost and sad, maybe a bit confused.  As I watched my lover approach her, and attempt to embrace her in welcome, I was shocked to see her wave him off and look about desperately.  She seemed entirely uninterested in hugging him, however, her face lit up when she saw me.  It was a strange feeling as I hadn’t seen her face light up like that in regards to me in over 30 some odd years O.o

As well, I was equally amazed to feel this powerful mixture of love and relief in response upon seeing her.  I couldn’t remember the last time I felt that sort of intense response to her – perhaps not since I was a very young child.  And yet, when I finally got to hug her, I felt a profound sense of connection, comfort and relief wash over me.

Perhaps this is what others experience when embracing their mothers, I thought to myself, as we held onto each other.

This is what I should have felt all those years, I decided, but oh my goodness, did it feel wonderful to have felt it then….

My mother immediately began to worry aloud about how my father had perhaps already entered the venue.  My mother told me that my father and she had become separated while in ‘this noisy, disorderly crowd.’   Looking about myself, I couldn’t understand how  this could be, as the crowd, though large, seemed full of folks who seemed to be behaving rather orderly and who seemed relatively calm and friendly.  It seemed to me that if she’d spoken up or asked for guidance, she would have received it — but if she had been too anxious and upset to ask for help from strangers….?  I could imagine how she could have misread the situation.

Suddenly, I looked at this woman, my mother, and I felt uncertain.  This woman looked like my mother…dark hair, dark eyes, dark clothes…worn and sad and looking lost.  But I was now there; oddly enough I felt glad that I had been there to comfort her.  I felt glad I had been able to console her.

She had allowed me to help her.  She had accepted my help.  How good it felt to connect with her – a mother who had wanted to see her daughter.  And how relieved I felt to be a daughter that had wanted to see her mother.

These were odd things but they were not small things.

~~~

Upon awakening, I thought over this dream and wondered if the event in the dream was somehow about a death of a sort, a death metaphor.  There were so many things about my dream that struck me as being indicative of transition and death

The Context of a Place/Loss: the sense of entry, the darkness, my mother’s fears and sense of confusion…but mostly the fact that my father is dead (he died in 2007) and the context of the dream was that my father was bringing her to a place where he and I had been before but she hadn’t.  And the base of my mother’s fear seemed to be within the context of her fear of loss and a terrifying fear of change – that was tied to the ‘loss’ of my father.  I never saw my father in the dream.  I was supposed to meet him but I had to see my mother first and bring her to him (they had become separated from each other in the crowd and my father had gone on ahead of her (she ‘lost’ her husband) and I was to give them tickets/escort them in?…

Gates, Transition, Waiting: The existence of a front gate and the crowds of people waiting to gain admittance to this place. The necessity of tickets or those who need to escort others in (I needed to ‘welcome’ my father or mother with a ticket; my lover ‘welcoming’ my mother, even though he did not know her.)

The protocols of welcoming gestures, embracing family and family connections:  The shared embraces were signs of connection.  My lover seems like a stranger to both of my mother and me, but he wasn’t somehow.  As well, how my mysterious lover honors the protocol of the welcoming gesture (the hug reserved for family members) upon arrival.  (Perhaps my lover was some sort of transitional entity for myself and for my mother, in that he brought us together?)

The sense of homecoming/relief.  There was a sense of ‘rightness’ or of situations being resolved, and realizing the context of ‘how one is supposed to feel’ and return to feelings that felt ‘right’ or return to feeling ‘connected.’  There was a sense of relief in the crowd too – glad to be here, glad to be with friends, glad to be allowed entrance (because they had their tickets too)…

The sense of darkness of weather/clothing/atmosphere of both sadness and resignation, and relief mixed with joy. My mother was in dark clothes reminiscent of a funeral, as were others.  The physical atmosphere/weather in the dream was that the sky was overcast, and it seemed about to rain, and yet no one seemed all that bothered – there was an air of reverent calm mixed with expectation from everyone but my mother.  My mother was upset and anxious about her ‘loss’, but everyone else seemed to be looking forward to the show.

Themes of transition and return: The sense of difference – this was like no other time, no other place, and yet I recalled it? – and how these odd meetings and memories stirred up feelings I’d either never had or feelings I hadn’t had in a very long time.

 

 

Scent.

The sense of smell is the first of all senses to develop.

Even before birth, the sense of smell is fully formed and functioning.

~~~

Recently I stumbled upon this poem by Galina Krasskova, and I cannot seem to stop thinking about it:

Scent Trails

Someone asked me once
if i could sense by scent
when You are near.
They wanted to know,
they said,
what the musk and aroma of a God
might be.

I had to stop.

How to put these things into words?
The vocabulary has not been invented yet.

You are so many things:

the smell of a place where many have died
the darkness of mystery – dank and bloodwarm,
the tang of the sky at the peak of a storm
and the howling of its winds if such sound
could carry with it keen-sharp scent.

You are steel in the cold,
the silent winter’s night
when not even the fiercest of beasts
dares roam
but all watch
with glittering eyes from their lairs:
They too are wary of Your passing.

Yours is the smell of savagery
cunning, and an ecstasy
so deep
worlds were born
in the wake of its devastation.
I cannot hold it,
not even to craft a drop of its essence
into words.

You are the presence
on the battlefield
a century after the last man fell,
the savor of remembrance
the shattering laughter,
a roar in the void,
and the echo of its silence.

You are fury,
oh that monk was right:
you indeed are fury
the glorious, joyous savagery
at the moment two armies meet in battle
at the moment you penetrate hidden power
at the moment you seize the trail of your prey
at the moment, every moment
when that which is in you bubbles over
and burns into those who raise their lips
in adoration to You
and we drink

You are Master of the Hunt
and we are all Your prey
if we are fool enough
(or lucky)
to stumble in the path
of Your desires.

As to scent,
forget what I have written here.
You will know when He comes
how poorly the senses translate
the vast joy-terror of His passing.
You will know
when you too
are marked with His scent.
You will know
when it is far, far too late
to flee.

(posted on her blog 12 October 2015)

One: Student.

Why am I so tired?

I will never understand why I convince myself I am paying attention.

Especially when I realize that it has happened again and I’ve fallen unconscious for hours.

Do You speak to me?

What are the lessons?

Certainly I must be a terrible student to be falling asleep in class all the time, and I only think that I have been awake and listening to You!

But You simply laugh and smile a mysterious smile. You whisper secrets that are nearly unintelligible and Your low chanting seems almost inaudible, as my poor brain struggles to follow along…

I have strange dreams about You.

I’ve misplaced an earring. I’ve forgotten the end of the story.  I’ve become lost in the woods.

You tell me not to worry.

You remind me that important things are never truly lost.

You assure me that the words will come to me; that the path will appear soon enough.

My confusion, my loss, my fear is only temporary; these are nothing more than what has grown from the misplaced beliefs and comfortable illusions I’ve created.

Your face, Your hands, the weight of Your presence are the only tangible things to believe in, the only solid proof to be trusted.

But I am afraid to close my eyes.

I cling to Your hand.

I falter; I fail.

The tears flow out from my eyes.  I am ashamed of my fear, my indecision, my helpless rage.

But You…

You run Your thumb under each of my eyes and lick Your fingers thoughtfully, nodding as You respond:

You worry too much.  You think too much.  Trust Me.