I’m bearing down on midnight, and no one’s on the road except me, just maybe a few drunk drivers, maybe a few cops quaffing coffee in their cruisers, maybe some wildlife, maybe some ghosts. And I’m so tired that my mind’s on cruise control as I think about something somebody just said to me — “Let your imagination run wild!” — and a satellite’s beaming songs to the radio in my car, and I hear “When the Night Comes Falling From the Sky,” and wouldn’t you know that now I notice for the very first time that there’s a high-flying fog or a low-lying cloud about 30 feet above me — this is what it looks like when the night falls from the sky!
My body needs to pull over but my mind’s in overdrive so I seek the median, the hyphen between yin and yang, and I sit on that flat thin parallel line and dangle my feet in the stream of my dreams.
I need a soundtrack, so I hit the search button, and the satellite spins into position and aims its beam at me, and I hear the weather in Cleveland and a snippet of Sibelius and a shot of Sinatra and a trucker on some Indiana highway who’s called a call-in show for truckers, and then, listen, it’s Jackson Browne (a greybeard now) singing from somewhere in space about wandering through the world as moments unfurl and how he’s waiting to awaken from this dream.
Now the low-lying cloud or high-flying fog has touched the ground. This is what happens. You slow down but gain speed. You reach your destination but you’re not even close. You drive for an hour but it feels like a minute.
Such remarkable sensations…when you follow instructions…and let your imagination run wild.