Live Virtual Group Session: 12pm EDT July 22nd 2020

Thank you to everyone who joined us for this session!

Our text was an excerpt from The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich, posted below.

Our prompt was: “Write about a quilt of dreams.”

More details will be posted on this session soon, so check back!

Participants are warmly encouraged to share what you wrote below (“Leave a Reply”), to keep the conversation going here, bearing in mind that the blog of course is a public space where confidentiality is not assured.

Also, we would love to learn more about your experience of these sessions, so if you’re able, please take the time to fill out a follow-up survey of one to two quick questions!

Please join us for our next session Monday, July 27th at 6pm EDT, with more times listed on our Live Virtual Group Sessions page.


From The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich.

The sun flooded the sleeping floor of the old house. A few late flies banged against the window glass, or died buzzing around in circles on the floor. The top of the quilt was warm. Thomas removed his trousers and folded them along the creases to renew their sharpness. He kept a pair of long underwear pants under the pillow.

He slipped them on, hung his shirt over a chair, and rolled under the heavy blanket. It was a quilt of patches left over from the woolen coats that had passed through the family. Here was his mother’s navy blue. It had been made from a trade wool blanket and to a blanket it had returned. Here were the boy’s padded plaid wool jackets, ripped and worn. These jackets had surged through fields, down icy hills, wrestled with dogs, and been left behind when they took city work. Here was Rose’s coat from the early days of their marriage, blue-gray and thin now, but still bearing the fateful shape of her as she walked away from him, then stopped, turned, and smiled, looking at him from under the brim of a midnight-blue cloche hat, daring him to love her. They’d been so young. Sixteen. Now married thirty-three years. Rose got most of the coats from the Benedictine Sisters for working in their charity garage. But his double-breasted camel coat was bought with money he’d earned on the harvest crews. The older boys had worn it out, but he still had the matching fedora. Where was that hat? Last seen in its box atop the highboy dresser. His review of the coats with their yarn ties, all pressing down on him in a comforting way, always put him to sleep as long as he rushed past Falon’s army greatcoat. That coat would keep him awake if he thought too long about it.

From The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich. Copyright © 2020

9 thoughts on “Live Virtual Group Session: 12pm EDT July 22nd 2020

  1. Counting sheep, feeling the rough wool pass under my fingers, struggling to keep it monotonous, until the room is no longer realtime but dreamtime, my mouth is moving with no sound, my shout a whisper, my hands sorting strange materials – bills, beads, buttons – and selling them for a desperate need, a dark shape behind a door I won’t open, I’ll go down any hallway instead, following a trail of carpets that outlasts the walls, becomes a lawn by a lake, the water churning to receive me, but I turn and run, the mud reaching up long fingers to slow my feet, until I remember and I breast stroke the air into flight. I am flying.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Antoinette, the words of your narrative conjure the unreality (surreal) of our dreams. I love the “trail of carpets that outlast the walls, becomes a lawn by a lake…” The churning reminds me of how we all have liquid in motion within, we all churn inside. And I love the multiple alliterations: mouth, moving; bills, beads, buttons; churn, turn, run. Thank you. Andre

      Like

  2. Sakinah

    A Quilt of Dreams

    Loosely stitched together swirls of dreams
    That left, seem gone…
    Dreams of love, happiness
    That have disappeared
    But somehow always reappear
    when allowed, dreamed of
    What shall I bind the edges with,
    or should I leave them raw
    Will I always lie under this quilt of dreams?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Sakinah, loosely stitched, swirling dreams that want to revisit might resist being bound. I hear this question, “Will lying under this quilt of dreams be a burden or a source of relief?” Thank you.
      Andre

      Like

  3. A quilt of dreams~~~

    This quilt, worn on its edges, loose threads here and there,
    pieced together from years of living,
    from years of struggles,
    from years of prayers.

    Squares of azure blue mimicking the skies above,
    limitless in dimension
    like the hopes I have for my children.
    Squares of sunlight bringing glimpses of a future,
    a future bright and full.

    Dreams of a mother stretch far and wide,
    of safety and health,
    but most of all,
    for peace of heart.
    A gift that sustains and strengthens
    as we journey on this pathway of life.

    I wrap this quilt about me;
    it comforts me;
    it sustains me.

    In its warmth, I feel the power of the Creator,
    who knows me so well.
    And in His arms,
    my dreams are secure and protected.
    And so I drift off…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michele, I sense a strong spiritual connection and I feel that peace of heart that comforts and sustains. Linking the sunlight to the hopes for your children add warmth that your quilt of dreams provides and you end up in HIs arms as you drift off. Andre

      Liked by 1 person

  4. al3793

    Wending my way along the narrow, steep mountain roads of Eastern Kentucky on a steamy summer day I often heard of the dreams of the people there, hoping for love, for those they love, for a better life away from the dark smothering dust of the mines, dreaming of the end of days when the fateful worry of what happened to Pap wouldn’t be handed down to the grandchildren.

    And as I looked up those thin hollows, against a backdrop of dense, lush, green forest, like the wall of an outdoor museum, I’d see quilts everywhere telling the stories of the people and the families who relied on those quilts for warmth, for cover, for closeness. We could tell how sick a person was by the number of quilts covering them when the medics wheeled them in. “Pearly needed 5 quilts and she’s burning up!”

    Hanging from clotheslines, at various angles to the landscape the quilts, fluttering in the cooling breeze, would broadcast the stories of the fabric of the lives of these people who loved the land with a fidelity equal to that of kin.

    I learned from stories told by Ink Wells, Moon Over Mountains, Harmony Squares, Drunkards Path, Hourglass, Grandma’s Flower Garden, Farmer’s Daughter, Double Wedding Rings, Flying Geese in Blue, Dawn Star, and The Tree of Life. But the two that told more stories than I could imagine were The Crazy Quilt and Unknown at Someplace. The sky was the limit for what could find its way into the Crazy Quilt, and what Unknown at Someplace told was limited only by my imagination. I could sit with these two, wrap myself up in them, feel them, hold them close and get to know them as I did the people there who opened their hearts reminding me often, with sparkling eye, that, “You gotta remember Doc, we’re raht different hiere.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sakinah

      Andre-

      This is wonderful and contains so much. How quilts are a story of lives in so many ways, spoken and unspoken, and receiving deep knowledge and understanding through them. This is surely part of cure…

      Thank you for this…

      Sakinah

      Like

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