In the early morning hours, I become entangled in a dream. I try scrambling up and out of it but it keeps pulling me back in – this sticky, oleaginous dream.
In it, I’m little. Maybe 6? And in this dream, I have scarlet fever. My skin has become so hot that it comes off like when you rub Elmer’s glue onto your palm, wait for it to dry, then slowly peel it off.
A red door in a yellow wall appears in my bedroom and through it I crawl. Suddenly, I’m in an Alice in Wonderland city. And in this place, my brain only registers red. It sees no other colour – only shades of red.
The city is filled with little red Citroens and scarlet tuk-tuks.
A pale red owl casually observes me as I wander through the cobbled streets splattered with droplets of carmine.
A sightless mannequin keeps watch over her small enclave, listening out for any wrongdoing. Not wanting to rouse her anger, I tread softly.
Cherry-red bins, hiding in corners, wait to be wheeled into the sunshine while brick-red leaves flutter down from above and come to rest gently on the earth.
Red doors slyly whisper, “Yes”, granting me permission to enter. If not now, when, they tease through painted lips.
Crawl through! Live a little!