Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Fan Jinghua: Dreams

  A restless night, with intervals of half sobriety. In the dreams, I was back to the past, to several women. On a small street, she descended from the top of a slope, bumping into me. She had the same walking and apparel: a white bag hanging on one shoulder, a green woolen overcoat. Catching sight of me, she startled to a stop, slanted her eyes, and lowered her head, shying by.
  I, half-awake, groped to the left while turning to the right. No one on the bed, empty except for me. There was a sadness in her eyes, but perhaps only my imagination.
  Twisting to find a comfortable position to resume my sleep.
  I found myself in a town I had never been before. It is her home. All her family members, none of whom I had met, were there, including her long-dead parents. I had a vague idea that maybe that was a partial dream, and her father was blind, but her mother, although probably there, was not seen. The family was at a poker game, around a round table; all the furniture was Chinese Ming-style. I did not know the rules, so I was walking around the rooms among the hanging curtains. Suddenly, we held together tight between the curtains, kissed wet, and thighs stuck close. Her sisters came by, seemingly intentional, and smiled ‘sorry.’
  Woken by the rain. It must be cats and dogs outside.
  I was back to her high room in the apartment house. In the distance, there was a tower beyond a stretch of lawn and a small lake. I was aware that there had been a traffic accident behind the trees that covered the road down there. It took place only days ago, but I was not sure how many days ago. She was sleeping then. There must have been some screeches, as if even I could hear. I realized that she had told me already.
  Walking the road toward the farmer’s market, we were met by Alyce. Alyce was talking to her, while I stood a little aside. Alyce glimpsed me while talking, smilingly. She told me later that Alyce said to her: This is a gorgeous man. She replied: A keeper.
  When I woke up again, it was now; but I fell back to sleep with the rain sound.
  At my parents’. I saw several beautiful waterfowls in the vat, like Chinese lovebirds, but they dived. I asked my mother whether they were mandarin ducks, and mom said they were some kind of fish. On the wall of the vat, there were some creatures with shells, conch-like. Their bodies sprawled out, with colorful glitters, and a pair of beautiful human eyes, shiny and watery, dwells under the antennae. I gazed into them, and they gazed back. I forgot when these shell creatures turned away, a little detached. Then, I turned to Mom: I’d better be off now. Mom knew that my wife and kid were in her parents’ and I went back alone. Mom said: Eat before you go. She had prepared food for my dad, enough for me too. I said the bus would be there anytime. It seemed I did not eat. From what my mom said, I sensed that my wife was my first love.
  Then, I was on the gravel road in front of my former middle school, and it was drizzling. Standing on the road, looking to the north, I found the same sight of the school where I spent about four years of my adolescence, during which I had secretly revealed to one or two best friends my love toward some girls. Those unpronounced loves, those transient loves; now they existed only in memory. However, many happenings later seemed to be the realizations of those dreams. Of course, the school has totally changed, and my former classmates are now the teachers. Memory clashes with reality.
  My wife was looking for something in a pile of something. I could not make out exactly what were in the heap. Books, old clothes, music cassettes, or CDs? Anyway, I said to her: “Don’t bother searching there. What you are looking for are for our son, but we are not married yet.” She did not seem to understand that we had not started a family yet. She did not understand that we were at present living in the past.
  I woke up.
               My Mom is hoeing (June 6, 2005)
  朦胧中又见到窗外一片绿草地,水塔,小湖。想着那楼下的树丛背后放佛有一场交通事故发生在昨夜,在她睡着的时候。我意识到,这都是因为她告诉我的。走在那个通往农贸集市的路上,Alyce走过,和她说话时满脸笑意的看着我,她后来告诉我说Alyce对她说This is a gorgeous man;她说:A keeper。

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