What is your nightly ritual before you let yourself be overcome by the strong temptation of slumber? Like that first whiff of sweet September air that has you longing for the beach, or that gentle hum of a melody that grows louder as you get closer to a venue – it’s just itching and aching to consume you; perhaps even devour you whole. Do you lie there and ponder how the events of your day could have gone differently? Do you obsess over your never ending and ever growing to-do-list? Or, do you take the modest option and fabricate ideal scenarios in that pretty little head of yours, just setting yourself up for disappointment?
Well, to hell with it all. Your inner child is begging for release. You are so excited for the events of tomorrow that you simply cannot sleep. In fact, it would be absurd to.
Wander into the field of dreams. Everything is not quite as it seems; with sheep that do not jump and birds that do not fly, how ever are we supposed to say ‘goodnight’? Where is the White Rabbit to your Alice? Where is the Colin to your Mary? This Secret Garden is not one for the fainthearted, nor is it one for those who have grown wary. Wary of the nursery rhymes, wary of the happy endings – the princesses, the paupers, and all those in between. Humanity should mourn the loss of these carefree nights in which our imaginations would run wild and we could do nothing to reign them in. I think it’s time you indulge.
You won’t sleep – no – your body will rest, but your mind will be as alive as ever. For one night, and one night only, you’re going to be devoured. Sit back and enjoy the ride.
You’re in an unfamiliar room – but you’re relaxed and feeling at ease. Floor to ceiling windows let in a strong beacon of light which parades itself around the room, bouncing off the ceiling and forming shadows on the wall opposite you. The furniture is simple, elements of the space mimic your childhood bedroom. You know this isn’t possible – that house was sold over a decade ago and has no doubt been inhabited by countless bodies unknowable to you since. Your old stuffed toys and graphic flannelette sheets have long met their fate, yet still they seem to beckon you closer with promises of solace and companionship.
In fact, the more you take in your surroundings, the more they don’t make sense. The scratched floorboards seem to have melted away into nothingness – much like the Wicked Witch of the West who so frequently inhabited this unconscious space when you were about half the height you are now. But now she is nowhere to be found, and instead the floor beneath you has become coarse and thick with strands of buffalo grass. They’re tickling your toes, and you can actually see the grass sprouting between them. Every now and then you think, maybe it’s started sprouting from your own body, but with a shake of your head the thought’s gone as quick as it came.
There’s a bird walking towards you. Why is there a bird in your room? You don’t even have time to contemplate this before you notice the beautiful flowers erupting from the earth surrounding you. You lie down next to your new friend – the bird – and speak with one another about your hopes and dreams.
You do not know whether you are lying in a field of daisies, a field of roses, or a field of posies. Are they in bloom, are they wilted, are they rotting at their core? Their strong fragrance takes over as you let out a gentle sigh. It doesn’t matter, and finally your mind is at ease. All you do know is: tomorrow is going to be a good day