Tuesday, August 23, 2005

who also dreams

I am the most busy I have been in months--going to classes, workshopping, listening, reading, lots of walking from here to there and back there again because I forgot a sweater the first time. I feel quiet descending from the hills.

One of my best friends sent me a letter this morning, and addressed it to: Ali, who loves. What I said to her was:

Many years ago I won a writing contest, junior high or high school, and the judge was a children's book author, Laurence Yep, who had written a book called Hiroshima, which had just come out. I didn't really talk to him. I didn't get to know him. There was a dinner but we didn't speak. The prize for the contest was a signed copy of his book. Maybe twenty dollars. A piece of parchment. Awful dinner. I don't know. I just remember the book, and not the story. What I remember is the way he signed it. He wrote, this man who had never met me, and never would: For Alison, who also dreams of peace.

I was fourteen or fifteen or sixteen. I dreamed of love and books and fancy dresses and fame and escaping North Central Ohio, and I still dream about those things sometimes, but yes, you were right, Laurence Yep, yes, you called it, yes, I who have dreamed of excitement and adventure and the world, its many fingers, I also dream of peace now. I think I have always dreamed of it, for myself, my heart, my mind, my body, my country, my past, my friends. I want calmness. I want still, deep water that goes on forever, that has some source. I want sleep. I want blanket. I want forehead. I want hill. Yes, I want peace.

We are dreaming of the same things. We cannot be the only ones.