The Time Machine

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Downtown Vancouver from the Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver

I am feeling positively refreshed this morning.  Sleep was deep and soothing last night. The battle waged now won, at least for this day.

Many things have come to light in the last few days.

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Native Sculpture at Waterfront Park, N. Van

Over the last week I attended two functions that required me to get up and actually read my work to an audience.

I’ve already weighed in that this is something I must do more of.  It is imperative to develop the spoken word now.

When it was discovered a few weeks ago that I had a recording feature on my cell phone I was quite excited. Now when this head of mine is urgently re-writing history or making up how history should have gone down, or any other number of phantom ideas that creep into it, I could take advantage of this by recording the facts of the matter that dance along my neuropath ways.

Last Friday evening I met my daughter after work.  We had a couple of drinks and caught each other up on the week that was now closing. We then shopped and latter grabbed a nibble.

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What can I say?  I’m a Pisces.

On the way home I decided to try recording a few thoughts and ideas on my phone. I could transcribe it later.  All those cool and sometimes heartfelt things that run through my grey matter could now be captured in the moment.

Of course the mood would have to exist.

And so I pulled out my phone to record any worthwhile bit as I walked back to my vehicle having now parted ways with my daughter.

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It was warm out and at 9:45 PM no jacket was required. The party crowd was beginning to emerge onto Granville Street. Young people already well into their cups ready to get down and party to the wee hours.   This is a Grad weekend for many as limousines’ snaked through the streets with excited teens hanging out of the windows screaming strange obscenities.

Their life before them is simply the joy at this moment that school is now finished. Most are not thinking past that.

I moved through the streets of this city of mine unseen. Few will take note of a woman getting on in her years walking down the street talking into her phone.

And that’s cool.

Funny how this celebration has changed over the years.  In my day there were no limos and such.  Then again, I didn’t exactly graduate.  I was part of the celebration though.  I was drunk beyond imaging that evening some 38 years ago and feeling completely disconnected to my peers. My life had gone to hell at the age of sixteen.

But I digress.

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For 22 minutes I spoke into the phone rambling about this, that and the next thing.

Arriving home I decided to listen to what had been said and then transcribe the spoken word.

I’m not used to hearing my own voice. Most of the time the perception of my vocal range is that it is monotone.

And as I listened to my voice ramble in an awkward eloquence on several topics, the thought occurred, “I cannot transcribe this”.

Clarification hit then.

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There is the written word and then there is the spoken word. Two very different animals.

Were I to transcribe what I had spoken I don’t know that you would get the whole of it.

The various inflections in my ruminations could never be conveyed on the page.  Indeed I would have to take the idea of it and adjust it accordingly so that the emotion, vulnerability and wonder that at times my voice parlayed could be appreciated.

In that moment I realized I’d never recorded anything of length other than the greeting that is on my phone and the one at work.

And I there I stood feeling the rush of words beginning to surface and the need to scribble them down with this sudden insight I had fallen upon.

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And I was feeling frantic. So much I want to say but the weeks of poor sleep were crashing in on me. My eyes were begging me to close them but with a brutal resistance I kept at this.

All I want right now is to curl up and sleep throughout the night.   But the head is screaming, demanding that all that is pent-up have the opportunity to be released.

And so with mindless ambition, I just gave myself over to the page.  The words now nearly illegible as I try to bring this night back for you.

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Some of what’s been written makes absolutely no sense to me.  It was 1:30 AM and I was trying to empty the head of the words that were pounding through it.

I had the TV on in the background which I described as “sights and sounds invading my line of vision with the rise and fall of the din created.”

It sounds impressive but I think at this point I had foot in the sleep realm.  Words from the subconscious never needing to make sense.  Not really.

And on both sides now I am waxing poetic about the spoken word AND the written word. I am behaving as if I’ve discovered the one thing that will save all humanity.  But then lack of sleep can take the mind into a strange vessel.

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Make you feel as though you are seeing everything for the first time even though you know all of it intimately.  And revelations abounded.

The battle I’ve had with self as of late now making sense.  I know what the next step is.  The vision is taking form.  For now those demons of doubt have be satiated.

And my last thought on Saturday morning when I finally let sleep claim me was this.


‘May sleep claim you in your honesty and release you with its wisdom’.







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