LAST NIGHT I did not sleep well. Halted at the thin edge of sleep, hot and dry, I had a repetitive, confused dream about tears. In the dream I decided that the shape of teardrops would make a good thesis for one of my "Words and Days" pieces. The concept is that tears fall rounded end first, and this is because they are gentler that way. If they were to fall sharp-end first, they would penetrate whatever they hit and cause injury. What makes perfect sense in a dream, of course, often makes no sense to the awakened mind. But this one did. Teardrops and icicles. Sharp points and round fullness. Healing and injury. Tears' gentle plashing conveys humanity at its most vulnerable. Tears are healing. Bottled up tears turn inward and become sharp and hurtful, frozen grief like icicles. Dwelling on the past is also unwise. "Waste not fresh tears on old griefs," as old Euripedes sagely counseled, but it's easier said than done, as anyone can tell you.
July 8, 1994
"Waste not fresh
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