Dreamless

by Gabriella Sonabend

I took a cycle rickshaw to the ghats with Terry again yesterday. It was a hot humid morning and we waited for the heat to pass leaving the residency near to dusk. When we arrived at the water we took a boat north towards the less crowded ghats, which the tourists do not bother to frequent. Here the water level had fallen enough to allow us to walk for while along the stone steps back towards Manikarnika, the burning ghat.

The evening light cast a gothic tint over the city. The empty ghats reminded me of scenes from British films set in India during the days of the Raj. Everything seemed strangely silent apart from the sound of birds swirling up ahead and the ripple of oars on the water, the occasional call of a boatman in the distance and our own footsteps heading south.

At the residency we discussed our dreams. Terry told us that since arriving in India he has been experiencing the most vivid dreams, such that he can’t distinguish between dream and reality in moments of waking. As he spoke of these stirrings I realised something rather strange. My sleep here has been dreamless.

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