Six Rainbows


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In my dream I am back at my parents house in the Chicago suburbs. I have come back for a visit along with my other siblings, but now it is over and I am packing my bags to go home. For some reason I have chosen to do this on a table set up in the backyard instead of in the house. I have three bags for my trip back and I find myself worrying whether the airline will let me bring more than the requisite two.

It is raining lightly and I am annoyed because everything in my bags is getting damp. Aside from being inconvenient to my packing the rain is soft and warm and not unpleasant. One of my siblings has left me some money on the table as repayment for a favor that I did them, but when I flip through the bills I discover that a few crumpled one dollar bills on the outside actually hide two one-hundred dollar bills on the inside. This seems like excessive compensation for a fairly minor favor.

I close my bags and begin carrying them towards the house. As soon as I zip them up the rain stops and the clouds part letting the sun shine through. I am nearly to the back porch and I turn to see whether I can see any rainbows like I remember from when I was a kid. The heavens do not disappoint. A bold clear rainbow appears and stretches in a full arc across the sky. Then, above it, appears a second. A double rainbow. Then, above those two appear two more so that four complete rainbows stretch across the sky. I can see a fragment of a fifth rainbow above them all and another, smaller fragment of a sixth rainbow beneath them- not full arches, but still clearly visible. 

Six rainbows in all. 

I have stopped, thunderstruck, just a few steps away from the house staring up into the sky. The ground is still wet from the rain and I can smell damp earth and plants around me. Before I can think or move another gap in the clouds form somewhere overhead sending a laser-sharp beam of golden sunlight down like a spotlight. 

“Look!” I shout to my siblings, who by now are nearby even though I haven’t turned away from the light-show to see them. “The end of it is in our yard!”

It occurs to me that the end of a sunbeam doesn’t have the same kind of significance as the end of a rainbow: there is no pot of gold, for instance, but the chances of a beam of sunlight that narrow and specific landing in our backyard seems significant nonetheless. Where it shines on the ground the water begins to evaporate in a fine plume of steam like smoke from a candle wick.

I feel the impulse to take a picture and discover that my camera is in my hand. I hold it up and press the shutter button without looking away. In the instant after my finger presses the button but before the picture is captured an angel with a sword appears at the base of the shaft of light. In a single movement she raises the sword over her head and plunges it into the ground and then vanishes. 

I never find out whether I caught any of it on my camera. I was struck by the impression that if I were to go to the place where the sword went into the ground that I will find something or someone there, but before I can investigate I wake up.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on May 31, 2013.

3 Responses to “Six Rainbows”

  1. beautiful and very vivid imagery ❤

  2. W-WOW! What a vivid/lucid dream! That was awesome and strangely homely. I think the message might be clearly this…relax, woman, for your family has your back. They are a blessing in disguise. A hundred bucks wrapped in lousy ones. While they may get on your nerves (counting the ones), they will not do you in. I see a number of doubts and concerns…the bags/airport regulations, the rain getting you wet, etc…yet wonderful surprises amount, as well. The sword with the angel is trying to tell you that you need not capture everything on camera. But, you may want to capture more moments with family that result in rainbows. Perhaps, there are 6 members in your immediate family?

  3. One more thought…aren’t there like six layers to many films? Sound and video layers? Could those have been the rainbows? Could the angel in the spotlight have been cutting off your concern for “fame” with your family all around you as a reminder of what really matters?

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