Blessay 31: An English Dreamer 2

My second English Dreamer account wasn’t originally written up by me. I deliberately let my friend and guide on the trip take notes as I dictated what was happening in real-time. It’s more rough, jerky and fragmented. No after-polishing of the event was done. I wanted it raw and direct. This meant my thought processes were not fully coherent. Which is fine, as an LSD experience often makes words redundant. So I was both the character in the incident and its ongoing narrator. Whilst my friend John was its engaged transcriber.

An English Dreamer 2 (1979)

It’s been one hour since taking the acid. Have an orange in my hand. Looks like the sun. The skin’s fascinating. So many pock marks and craters. Serpents in an orange sea. The orange is the world. I’m peeling it. The skin’s off. I’m dividing it up into segments. Larger portion (two-thirds) is the rich world. And the smaller bit is the poor world. I can’t eat the bigger bit. Now I’m squeezing the poor. For a moment it looks like a vagina. I feel angry about that bigger bit. And some guilt. I’ve put down the orange. I’m staring at my orange stained hands. “I don’t want these people to die.” Looking down at the discarded orange peel lying in the field. “You still carry the world with you.”

Walking down a slope. My body feels very light. Now I’m climbing over a fence. Into another field. So much distance distortion. John appears far away. Now close. We have left the field and we are back on the road. I can see a group of people picking blackberries. John is giving me a cigarette. I’m not used to smoking. How the paper and the tobacco burns and roars! The fruit pickers have vanished. A man is approaching. He looks like a country villain scouring the roads for victims. I hiss as he passes by.

We are back in a field. The Sussex downs looks so lovely this warm August day.We are going up a hill. It’s the hill of life. I’m looking at John’s feet. His shoes have some cow dung on them. They’re magnified like the flowers and insects playing round me. We’ve hit another gate. The termite patterns in the wood enthrall me. Beyond it is barbed wire. Humanity crucified. No crown of thorns for me.

I can see a white horse in the next field. A man, dressed in black, appears on the horse. Now he is talking to a young woman, a country wench. The man. Yes, the man is probably the Sheriff of Nottingham. John is opening the gate. He’s crouching down and his back is ape-like and servile. A servant of the Sheriff

It’s another field. Another way forward. Conscious of its barbed wire. I’m not yet middle-aged. But the wire seems to be saying that it is the mid-point of life. There’s a trough here. I don’t want to look. It could be a grave and I might see the date of my death. “I’ll have a good death. I’m confident I will.” Their are some flies on my legs. I think they think I am a corpse. “Not yet.” Looking at the lines on the palms of my hands. Searching for the heart line. Following it to see where it ends. Not sure. I’m kneeling down and pressing my head against the earth. It feels so good to make contact. I stand up to see that John has a feather in his hair. He’s a young eagle who can fly away.

A herd of cows is watching me. I’m talking to them. “What do you think of England?” No cow answers. “Always in the shit.” Traffic noise shocks me. I’m considering becoming a Reverend Kilvert figure. I want to visit my parishioners. But I don’t have a church. Do I need one? We return to the road. There’s woman in her car waiting for a break in the traffic. She’s more stranded than she thinks. I know. Know it so well. My Welsh blood. My Welsh traveled road. Start running down the road like a kid. “It’s so good to be alive!

Approaching a wood. I ask John to wait at the entrance, whilst I explore it alone. He agrees. I enter the wood. (The events in the wood were written up later by myself. Though their style is still one of fragmented recollection). The place exudes enchantment. I glimpse elves and pixies peeping behind the trees. I pick up a bird’s nest. If I lived in this I could gain the strength of a bird to fly. I place the nest against my heart to activate me. Close by is a cave. I sit at its entrance. I call out to John. Then stop. I don’t need him. John flits by as an old man of the wood waving his stick. The nest transplant to my heart isn’t working. Humans were not meant to fly.

I begin to run through the wood. I halt at a pile of rubbish. All metal and plastic. I pick up a dustbin lid. A handy shield. Find an old iron gate. It’s letters are broken. One has fallen off. The letter R. This is repression. So I place it inside my bird’s nest. Old pram among the strewn rubbish. I take of my sandals. Place them, birds nest, lid and R inside the pram. I want it to be an absurd phoenix rising from the ashes. I leave the wood to rejoin John who looks a little anxious. My five minutes alone was in reality an hour. We set off for a bus back to Brighton.

Walking past an old people’s home. Stone herons on the gate. An old man, in his underwear, stares at me from the lounge window. We wave at one another. Then an attendant pulls him away and draws the curtain. immediately feel I must help him escape. But the herons are displeased and prepare to attack me. I gently talk to the birds and pacify them. John has to lead me away.

Back home. I rush to my room. Head beating. Strong idea for a poem. Strong identification with a monkey. Sense my ancestry. The words are so jumbled and mad. John goes to the kitchen to make us a meal. I put on some music. Wagner, the last act of Götterdämmerung. Room getting darker. Dark river. Dark wood. Dark ape. The ape in the mirror watches me. I open a drawer in my writing desk and produce a dice. Keep rolling the dice on the table. Keep coming up with sixes.  I want to stay young.

John calls out to tell me meal is ready. Good  to chew food. I think of Dickens. Rembrandt. A strong sensual Christ. Then exhausted fall sleep.

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