In a book I have loved reading several times, and that I frequently forget, and then recall and look forward to rereading, though with layers of understanding and complexities of attitude (call it cynicism, or experience, or years, or fear, or boredom, or change; it is also poems, chapters, questions, memories, and nostalgia now relieved of the need to believe that this drive ever winds up someplace called home), communard members in a kind of time and place parallel to this otherwise-agreed-upon time and place live together, as communards do. They feed each other from their shared pots with their fingers, rather than taking food for themselves, and everyone is thus easily filled. They sleep in circles with their feet toward the centre and their heads pointing out the spokes of the wheel, and in the morning they sit each facing another and they tell one another their dreams.

cover art for the 1971 novel by Dorothy Bryant

Now I told you that I have mixed feelings about this book, which I have loved reading several times, and look forward to rereading, with feelings including, in fact, delight that such mixed up smarts and cynical poetry provides.

It is a likely story, as a certain third age professor emeritus might point out, given the opportunity (he is who this post is really about, you can tell from the mention of nostalgia, and dreams). But the reality of rising from your spoke at dawn and turning to the one who freefell beside you last evening, and facing them (leaning? in easy pose? morning breath? desire? no stimulant? black coffee, tonic, astringent, bitters, dandelion, vinegar–please? erection? what happened the night before? routine? work? ecstasy? dancing? meditation? what about weather in this tee pee, adobe, stone circle, faerie ring?), and telling your dreams is, be honest, a little annoying? Every. Morning. Boring.

Unless you rose beside the one you want each dawn. It being utopia, who would/n’t?

And so I will not attempt to win you with my dream from another morning. But in it was a message, in words, that goes: counterculture is one. It was written on the face of that professor I mentioned, above his eyes. I tried to ignore it. But it does not leave.

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