Tuesday, May 22, 2007


We met, as usual, over tea. I brought you the travel mug filled with lichee. My coffee cup was filled with English Breakfast from Trader Joe's. "Did I wake you this morning?" you asked.


"Around 4:30."

"I don't think so."

"I was dreaming of Ellen. I think I had a full memorial service."

It was an interesting coincidence. I, too, dreamed of my departed friend. Clearly my mind was processing her death. In my dream, Steve, Archie, and I met at Ellen's apartment. Of course, Ellen didn't live in an apartment, let alone in the one we first shared, but this is dream territory. The inside was completely different and larger than our old space. Archie, Steve, and I shared a joint and spoke about our love for Ellen. We had been told by her mother to come take away any keepsakes we wanted before the cleaners arrived. The cleaners were going to box the rest up and donate it to charity. We spent a couple of hours chatting, poking around, crying, hugging, comforting. Unexpectedly early, the cleaners showed up with Ellen's mom and her sisters. We panicked and began scurrying around for the items that we knew we wanted - the ones we really came for. Archie found a disk, a small sculpture, and a book. Steve found an ashtray, a book, and a photo. I grabbed a vase that I dreamed that I gave Ellen, a photo, a CD, and several bottles of wine which I took to share with friends for an after-wake wake.

Soon after this I woke and not long after that found myself listening to your dream. Yours was different than mine, but the feeling of letting go persisted in both. Were we letting go of Ellen? Were we dealing with her memory - separately, but simultaneously? Were we dealing with each other? I accept coincidences, though I don't always like them. Like most human minds, my mind likes to form relationships and tie things together. Some times those connections are warranted, but just as often they are not. It is the miracle and curse of the human condition.

So, what to make of this coincidence? Both of us, in dreams, during the same time of the morning, dreaming of a friend and our mourning of her? Perhaps, I thought, Ellen was reaching from beyond and pulling us together, reminding us of how we need each other and how we connect so well, more often than not.

This atheist doesn't really believe that tale. Yet, it was beautiful and it brought tears to my eyes. Ellen has brought me many tears this week. A spiritual cleansing? Something worth meditating on further

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