• Joseph Kolb

Email: Hands

What are your guys’ (or is it guy’s? hm) dreams like? I feel like in the past several months mine have been so detailed and draining in their…. richness I guess. I read a quote from someone (Carrie Fisher I think? but I can’t find a source :^( )that millennials love talking about their dreams and if that ain’t me……….

More recently I had a nightmare (memorably)

I had a nightmare in which I was being chased

by large, flat creatures made up of what I can

only describe as a patchwork of various pelts,

with various sets of teeth — breathing, writhing

things. They encompass me slow like blankets

(or maybe just blankets alive!). I try to crawl out.

More and more often lately in my dreams I find myself in situations that make me think to myself (in the dream) this isn’t a dream (because I would know right now). For example I dreamt last night I was on the top floor of some kind of structure, like an unfinished parking garage, and had to take the stairs down, except while I descended I discovered that more and more of the steps were missing, and I was forced to jump further and further to make my way to the ground level. As I continued I found that some of the steps were different colors, or different textures (one of them being covered in orange fur — I don’t know why fur is so present lately), but while I forced myself to make leaps and ignore my continually impending nervousness of heights, my fear of losing my footing or underreaching a jump, I thought to myself, “I can’t miss. Because this isn’t a dream.” And that hasn’t happened to me before. I feel like we all have dreams where we’re forced to fall, but in mine, in the past, I have never actively thought of things that way, though I have had feelings (adrenaline; fear of falling), and I also have had the sense that something is in the same place that dreams take place // that I’m in the groove of a dream. But more often lately I find myself actively thinking while dreaming, which is new, for me. If you think in a dream is it part of the dream, or is it present (“awake”) thought?

—— — — —- —— — — — —- —- — — — —- —

Yesterday I painted my nails an ashy gray. I bought the polish at Duane Read for $1.49. Today I went to Verizon because I lost my phone on Friday night//Saturday morning, and at this point, the best option (unfortunately) is to get a new phone. I gave the Verizon associate my info and stuff and he started typing it all into the computer. The store is small and kind of sad, sad in that went you start looking at the details you can see that whoever designed it was trying to cover up the fact that, at its core, the room was just another Manhattan commercial space waiting to be abandoned and recycled. But all the furniture is very modern to make bareness perceived as tasteful simplicity. And because of this my Verizon associate’s desk is a small table that he stands at, and I can easily look down at his hands, which are equally small (but he is a small man, or at least smaller than me), and they are a cloudy red, dry and scarred, almost like pastry in places. I look closer and — he has no fingernails.

The tips of his fingernails are slightly pointed, smooth, and it inclines me to count his joints to check if maybe his fingertips were removed somehow, but they don’t seem to be, by my count. I have no inclination to ask. He types gracefully and I think his hands are beautiful, despite the skin discoloration and damage. When he asks me to access my account on his computer and I start typing I feel very aware of him looking at my hands now. I don’t feel embarrassed, or really any second-hand emotions that I could feel him possibly feeling, just very aware that I was looking at his hands and now he is looking at mine.



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