Tonight I dreamed of a different world. I dreamed that I was walking down a lonely bridge, and i stopped to look down. The river had become the sky. There was a splash of pink where the water met the horizon, miles and miles away. There were fluffs of white clouds like cotton candy, floating about in the stillness. And there was me, well a face like mine, anyway.
She seemed happy. Odd. I wasn’t. It felt like the river was another world. An Upside Down world, maybe. Or a parallel one, just hidden underneath this sheet of water; its sky our water and our sky, its space.
And everything about the world seemed lighter… brighter.. better . Or perhaps it was just that the grass is always greener on the other side. You can never know.
The hues of pink and orange, now that the sun was already setting rapidly (or perhaps it was rising underneath. Where did the sun go, really, when it disappeared that way?) were more lively in the water. Shining. It was inviting.
Perhaps it was a world. Perhaps I could simply walk into it…No, that wouldn’t be right. It was water, afterall. Perhaps I could sink into it. Maybe.
I wonder if that was what everyone before me was looking for. Another world. Another life. One where they were free.
The breeze grows heavier and the clouds gather, over and under the bridge, alike. I feel the soft splash of a rain drop on my face and look up, then down.
The drops attack the water like a shower of arrows, shattering the world it held so dearly. I sink to my knees, holding the railing. It was real. The world was real. And now it was dying. Or closing, depending on how you look it at. It would take hours, or maybe even days(who knows when the rain would stop) for the world to come back.
My other self, the happy one, she’s almost gone now. I can make out her shape, distorted and ripply but i cant see her clearly. The white of the clouds now looks like spilt milk. It was all wrong.
So I turn and walk away. That wasn’t the world I wanted. So i wouldn’t go there.
I had just crossed the bridge when the rain stopped. The wind was still there, though. And I walked and walked, pulling my coat firmly around myself, disappearing into the dark woods ahead.
That’s probably when I woke up. I didn’t realise when the darkness of the woods had turned into that of my room. Or when the cool raindrops that had trickled down onto my face became the warm salty tears whose lines now ran along my cheek.
I was awake, though. And the river and the bridge were gone. The happy me was gone too. Too bad. I liked looking at her. Her skin crinkled at the corners of her eyes when she had smiled, from down there, at me. It wasn’t a mocking smile. Or a sad one, one that I wear everyday. It was kind.
I turned over in my bed, burrowing my face into my pillow. Come back, please, I whispered. A silent prayer to the river and the bridge and her, my happy self with the kind smile.
I closed my eyes and let my breathing even out. I let myself fall into the rythm of the blades of the fan turning over me and the soft swish of the curtain behind me bed and my own slow and deep breaths.
Sleep came easily. And then, I dreamed.