The other night I had a dream I was back in school. It was a huge, all-encompassing school not broken at all by grades. The building was a warm caramel color, dipped in gold light. I passed the first building which I knew I didn’t belong in. And then I walked into a class I wasn’t sure I belonged in. It was a writing class, a literature class of some sorts and it turns out I didn’t sign up to be there. The professor was a young woman, a bit older than me, but intense. All the students were intense artists with hard-fought ideas and passions. I felt immediately that I had made a mistake, that I didn’t belong and all the other people knew I didn’t belong. The professor went around to everyone who signed up for the class to ask them about themselves, what they loved, why they thought they were there. She knew every student by name and skipped me because I had just wandered in. And when I knew for sure she wasn’t coming back to ask me, she called me name, she knew my name and said she couldn’t find me on the list, but what did I want to share.
Suddenly, I lit up. I didn’t really answer her question or the question she posed to the others, but I talked about that small letter I found by the post office the other week. I told them I collect things. I may not belong in some high-class literature class, I may not know how to bullshit my way around Kafka, I may forget the meter to a pantoum, I may not know a lot of things about a lot of things, but I’m a damn good collector. I’ll find a place there.  The other things – that’s what books are for.


Also, for the longest time I’ve had reoccurring dreams about losing teeth. Sometimes a tooth will be loose, sometimes it will fall out completely. What scares me most is I can never get them back. Once they are gone, they are gone. I’ve been dreaming about my teeth since I was 16 or 17.

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