Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • The days toward winter pass....
    and it seems like
    the signal to noise ratio
    in the property of ...
    of what?
    my own private cosmology?
    Becomes a bit clearer.

    I had a dream.
    Sleeping in a hotel in Rome.
    Someone had been assigned to
    Assassinate me.
    Like a movie plot.
    Like the Bourne movie on
    the plane over to Europe.
    And I was, well,
    Soberly assessing things.
    Like the action adventure hero.
    How do I not get killed? How do I stop the killer?

    The answer ... arrange to make it look like the killer
    Had killed me, but so that he gets caught.
    Maybe at the end of a crowded pier
    Or disappearing in an avalanche.
    The point is I would survive.
    But to the world, I would be gone.
    Like so many endless movie plots.
    An anonymous resurrection.

    The dream didn't bother me.
    Death was not that threatening. It was
    A puzzle to solve.

    I woke up and wondered.
    What was that about? Dryly. A relaxed and quiet question.

    Moments later
    I thought about my brother and his nightmares
    Surviving isolation and the pain of repeated spinal taps
    At age 3. With meningitis.
    And me as his mechanism to work out demons. For years.
    And where that left me. As a child. As an adult.
    A willing sacrifice, my suffering
    As a balm to his pain.
    Who did that make me?
    Was it time to stop?

    Now, a dozen years after my brother's death,
    I discover more in the layers of my subconscious,
    about the dragons that still pursue me.

    And suddenly, I found the tears.
    And I collapsed for a while in quiet sobs.
    It felt awful ... and cleansing.

    We all have these moments. Little deaths of some part of
    ourselves, deaths that make space for new beginnings.
    Change. Just that.

    I stepped off the plane at Heathrow.
    And saw this sign. Fuzzy in my early morning
    Transition.
    "Face the Direction Of Travel"
    Odd, but I took it as zen wisdom,
    parsed out by the airport authorities,
    reminding us to watch out,
    because we need to know,
    where we think we are going.
    • Share

    Connected stories:

About

Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.