I enter it every night. It's a place I escape to, four walls, a ceiling and a floor, where anything and everything is possible. The passenger seat is still empty.

About a month or so ago I started collecting all the odd scraps of memory I’d been saving and stowing in various places around my house. Movie stubs, receipts and postcards; origami figures and silver rings. I put them in shoe box I’d had plans of painting into some sort of profound design. But I think I like it just gessoed white and plain.

I named it my Dream Box, and it has some of the most beautiful things I own in it:

  • A pebble I stole from the stream that runs by the farm where my first high school sweetheart lived. I put it in my pocket when he wasn’t looking during a birthday party toward the end of our 14-year-old affair. I put it on my tongue some other nights when his affections were waning and I was still crushing hard.

  • A stamp from Botswana.

  • The movie stub from when S. and I went to see What Dreams May Come (10/31/98). It was our one-year anniversary. I cried and cried and cried through this movie, once I realized that I could not enjoy a story about love more precious than heaven itself in a relationship where death would have been a welcome escape.

  • My very first Jonny McGovern promo card.

  • The cat-shaped ring I bought to match my frog-shaped one. I was the frog and A. was the cat, and I could position the rings on fingers like we were kissing on my hand... I can’t wear that ring anymore.

  • My Degree Audit Report form saying all my requirements are filled for my physics major. Thank fucking god.

  • A ticket for the ferry from Fajardo to Vieques (7/28/00). On the island of Vieques, I saw the stars in the water and watched fire in the sky. I betrayed a friend and I made a mistake I will never, ever forget. I can only hope I have learned.

  • A little metal badge for every museum that M. and I visited when I was still so in love.

  • Ed Norton. (OK, so it’s just a cutout from People magazine, but ...)

  • A "Brooklyn" gum wrapper that Loon's friend gave me at WickerNipple's birthday party

  • The stub from Requiem for a Dream. It holds all the shaking of the after, somewhere in its paper core.

    (and my most recent addition...)

  • B.F.’s BFA exhibition card. I got him to give me two copies, just so I could tape one up on my monitor and still have one for the dream box. He put my very favorite painting of his on the front of the card. The little 3x5 black and white reproduction does not do the 6.5 foot painting justice. But it still gives me a hint of hope in beauty. I’ve staked all my hopes on this show. Because I know that after it I have to give up on him. In the meantime I’m just going through the motions and dreaming.

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