Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bob Dylan & Strange Ghosts

Ghosts. People don't always believe in them, but are always afraid of them even if they don't exist. A friend told me the "prime places" to see a ghost are in mirrors or in window glass. I said that those were also "prime places" to see reflections. She said people smell actual perfume scents when some ghosts are present, or they feel a terrible chill, or they feel as if they are being watched, and the creepiest of all, to me, is 'the nudge' The nudge is the ghost poking at you or pushing you. The nudge might be ghost language for "It is time for you to leave now." or "Let's dance!"

A number of perfumes have been presented as ghostly, but what could that mean beyond a catchy name for marketing purposes? Since fragrances are invisible, they invite ghostly comparisons. But I'd like ghosts that you could see, the ones that climb up and down stairs, or walk up and down passageways. Ghosts that seem to float. Ghosts that are clothed in white with some powdery air swirling around/through them. I'm still waiting for a glimpse.

To me, a perfume that is ghostly would be one that takes you someplace far away in time. Or maybe a perfume that is powdery and white in the mind's eye.

"The act of writing requires a constant plunging back into the shadow of the past where time hovers ghost-like."
--Ralph Ellison

When I read this quote I thought of how hard it is for me to write a daily journal. I do much better at looking backwards into the past, where the absurdity of events has been softened or explained somewhat by the passage of time. I can relate the incident without the emotion of the moment clouding/confusing it. But the downside is, that unexpected things do lurk in the memory shadows. Little surprises.

"The light in this place is so bad
Making me sick in the head
All the laughter is just making me sad
The stars have turned cherry red
I'm strumming on my gay guitar
Smoking a cheap cigar
The ghost of our old love has not gone away
Don't look like it will anytime soon
You left me standing in the doorway crying
Under the midnight moon."
-- Bob Dylan