The journey takes forever it seems. Foreign territory and decrepit decaying storefront hovels that might have once been respectable… maybe not, maybe they always had the spirit of seediness, rot and neglect. Hunting grounds of the human butchers. Zombieland where others, impatient of the exterminator, simply let themselves go.
Bit by bit it becomes more civilized, miles later there are even tidy well-tended gardens after the stretch of tiny storefronts gives way to something a little more aspiring to gentility.
Cut through tinder-dry grasslands and cheerful seeming poplar forests dappling the road with intermittent shade. To the right, a sheer drop off the edge of the world as we climb to the top of the world.
Come up to sandy expanses, seeming like an endless beach but more realistically like a dusty construction zone.
A dark tunnel appears in the weak underbelly of a bland concrete citadel. Or perhaps a temple of sorts. A thousand hidden passageways, endless stairs above the cloudlines, discreet courtyards and a suspension in mid-air above a tiny tree, hanging from the ceiling or a black sky perhaps and looking at a shaft of light. Fragments of a market or shops or kiosks, something like that.
An urge to sit still and chant ancient prayers, breathe incense and wait for satori in the crisp air and gentle sunlight.
Again and again I went there and never could figure it out upon waking.
And this time awake I found myself in the place. Exactly as I dreamt it but of course the confusion of fragmentary dreams was lifted. It is an ancestral memory from before my birth and perhaps one pilgrimage in my first five years. It also turned out to be a turning point in my future, or at least it was the future when I dreamt it so many times.
I got lost there but never feared, I knew I would find my way back to the little room suspended above the world. I probably dreamt that part too.
I felt the compulsion to return with a tangible something of the place. Something the color of all the blood I put into getting there in the first place.
There is no need to chant the prayers anymore, they are already being answered.