Tonight, a love of mine and I dreamed.  We dreamed of lives and plans and ways of living and planning.  We spun stories and debated how to make the words fly from our lips, fly from the page, fly free.  We dreamed, and yet I held out caution.  Held out possibilities.  Held out truths of who I have been… because these things need to inform.

There are those who can dream freely, fly freely.  But these truths of blood, of upbringing, of nature and nurture, hold onto me.  They are my mire.  They decry that I am a creature of vacillation, a creature that needs bars from time to time.  I need territory within which to stomp, rage, rend.

It has been some time since that beast has ridden my skin, since I was blind in the muck.  Since I raged and destroyed, slammed heads into walls and tore apart the things I hold dear.  And yet I have been that creature, that mad being, that thing of unconquerable delirium.   I have seen him shake the walls of heaven, rip down the gates of hell, have seen him be all he, and she, is.

Sitting with this thought, this thing in the shape of fear of destroying beauty, I put in a movie.

I put in “Sylvia.”

Just as she did in “Proof,” Gweneth Paltrow brough grace and honor to the face of madness.  I did not know it would be a movie about madness… how could I have not known?  How did I no know that Sylvia Plath committed suicide with her children in the next room?  How did I not know of her desire for bones dashed to waves, the ocean spitting her back like a cork.  The ocean did not want her, she said.

I watched and I breathed her in.

“I love people. Everybody. I love them, I think, as a stamp collector loves his collection. Every story, every incident, every bit of conversation is raw material for me. My love’s not impersonal yet not wholly subjective either. I would like to be everyone, a cripple, a dying man, a whore, and then come back to write about my thoughts, my emotions, as that person. But I am not omniscient. I have to live my life, and it is the only one I’ll ever have. And you cannot regard your own life with objective curiosity all the time…”
— Sylvia Plath (The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath)

I breathed her in and I saw her through the mire.  Saw her through my fear.  Saw in her my fear and realized, dear Sylvia, sweet Sylvia… I am not you.  I love you sweet Sylvia, mad Sylvia, drawn and quartered by the heat of your own heart Sylvia.  And I am not you.

Dream through the muck and the mire with me.  I am dreaming through the mire a love and a life and a family and a career.  I am dreaming through the mire the shape of flesh to flesh and tears wiped away by steady hands.  I am dreaming, and in the dreaming I birth a dream and let it fly free.