Of Dreams and Memories

My dead grandfather visited me in my dreams last night. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love dreams and I actually revel in my acid trip-esque dreams, but I have never put much stock in them. I’ve never really believed in divining things from dreams in the supernatural sense like if you dream about a black dog you’re going to die or if you dream about a marshmallow you must love that one guy in your math class who’s face looks like a marshmallow or if you go to Mt. Fuji in your dreams then that must be a message from God that that is where you must go now. I’ve just never believed in that stuff, and I have even always been super skeptical of when characters in the Bible received dreams “from God” and would have them interpreted.

But after last night, I can’t be sure if my dream didn’t mean anything. It was so vivid and moving and I know that we can feel emotions in dreams and all that junk but I cried and wept like I have never in a dream before. I know you’re all wondering what happened in the dream now, such suspense has been created, and so I shall now relate it to you to the best of my remembering capabilities…

I was at some sort of party. The whole dream had switched to a blue tint. I was making my way through people when I saw him or someone told me he was there and then I saw him, but when I saw him I immediately burst into tears and ran to him to hug him. And I did and I cried and smelled his smell and he said “My dear Ally”. I don’t know what else we said to each other but I was so shocked that he was back. After that I went and did something else at this “party” until someone (I think my aunt) told me that I should go say goodbye to Grandpa Chris before he has to go back. Go back? Then I ran to him as he was “ascending” and grabbed onto him and cried and told him that he can’t leave, we haven’t had enough time together, he has to stay. And he just patted my head and said that he couldn’t but he’d see me again someday. And then I let him go and he was gone. And I cried. And I woke up later and felt the tears trickle down my face.

I had seen him. I had talked to him. It has been almost 10 years since my Grandpa Chris passed away. I was young, still in elementary school and I was devastated to be sure, but I was confused and I only saw him and my Grandma Lou about once or twice a year and so did not immediately feel that sense of loss, and didn’t feel it till really this year when I went back to Missouri over the summer and stayed with my grandma alone for a couple days. That is when I really felt his absence, how strange to feel the absence of something or something, but it is so tangible and it has been these last couple months. I’ve missed him so much and I get so sad knowing that he didn’t get to be here to watch my cousins and I grow up; he did’t get to see who I am becoming and I wish I had got to really know him.

I can only hope that he has maybe glimpsed my life from afar, from some afterlife, but I cannot be sure. And maybe, just maybe, he came down into my life for a little while last night. I would like to think that. That some form of his soul or spirit touched mine from somewhere beyond, just to remind me that he is still here and he still cares and he’ll always be my grandpa, my grouch. I would like to believe that. And I think that I do. Those who die never truly leave us, and perhaps they simply live on through us, through memories, through love but then they can never truly be apart from us and that is a comforting thought indeed.

In Memoriam 

Melvin Carl Christofferson 

February 26, 1930- January 14, 2005

I Smell Your Memory

I never knew what exactly
You smelled like,
But I loved it.
The smell was musky
And strong and
Warm,
Like you.
It was comfort.
I long for that comfort now.
To be a small child
In your arms again
And to run, run
Run,
Screaming in excitement
And fear
From your
Hook
That replaced that hand
You lost
So many years ago
Out on the farm.
You were part of that farm
And I loved it.
I loved you.
Even if you were a
Grouch.
That’s what you called yourself,
Remember?
I laugh as I
Hear it and
See you shake your
Claw.
I know what you smell like
Now.
I smell it on passerby,
On my friends who return
From outside,
Blowing smoking tendrils into
The cold night,
I smelled it on a boy I once loved,
And now on the man I do love;
But it is you I smell, grandpa
Not them,
And not
The cigarettes.
 

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