Cold White Room

Posted: September 21, 2009 in graffiti living
Tags: , , ,

I slept in a cold room; so cold that I couldn’t move and couldn’t breathe. I tried to sleep and tried to keep warm by burying my head in the pillow, but fell asleep with my arms trapped underneath me. I’d started to smother myself with the pillow; so much so that in my dreams I dreamed of arguments and nightmares until I woke up and burst into tears. That’s what I needed to breathe. I didn’t understand it at the time, but I’d upset myself so that I could wake up. I’d upset myself so that I’d get out of the cold room and start breathing.

What did I see in the cold room? I saw only the blood of my dreams, and the frost of my breath when I woke up and turned over. The cold room was a blank room with white walls and no sun. That’s why it’s so cold; the world has no windows. The cold white room doesn’t get any natural light, and so the cold seeps into the walls and stays there. When it’s freezing, the room takes on damp and mould from the absence of natural light; visible in the glare of an artificial light that gives out no warmth.

The room was so empty that I was forced into my dreams, and woke up there. A good way to induce lucid dreaming is to inflict persistent pain on your body as you sleep. If blood came running out of my mouth it would be hot, so long as it came from the core, because that is where all my heat retreated to. My heat retreated to my heart as I slept and felt the pain of the room, the pain of my arms pinned down as I lay there. I didn’t really see the room as my eyes were open in my dreams but closed in the room.

What did I hear in the room? I heard the sound of my dreams; but then you could argue that means I wasn’t in the room. So what did I hear from the room itself – I heard my breathing and the blood of my voice. I groaned as I turned, and tried to move, but couldn’t get up off of my arms. I was wrapped too tight in a blanket and heard myself shivering. I heard myself wheeze. In short; I heard myself. I don’t remember being able to hear much else – it’s like sound doesn’t get trapped in the room; or that the sound it does trap, dies there.

The sound of my breathing lay dead in the cold white room; my breath had died there as I slept and tried to wake up. I heard silence, I heard absence, I heard the cold turning the walls to mush and mould. I heard the cold damp walls, and the reach of my breathing wasn’t enough to touch them, too distant and weak to add any warmth or heart to the walls. So the walls stayed wet and I stayed in my dreams.

What did I smell in the cold white room? I smelled the blanket, the pillow where my face was buried. I could smell the stink of my own hot breath being recycled as I breathed it in and out again. I could smell fresh paint on the damp walls. The walls ran slick with sweat – I watched as the wall’s tears gathered and turned to mould in front of me. They stank like sick mixed with memory; good memories and bad ones. The kind of smell that sticks in your throat like a block of ice, then thaws and runs down the back of your throat, where it threatens to fill up your lungs and drown you with bad dreams if you don’t wake up.

Sleep in the room too long and you’d wake up with a fever. The walls were fevered too, that’s why they sweated even though it was so cold. Sweating their body tears. I could feel the weight of my own body, the weight of my own dreams, and the weight of the cold wrapped around me. Sleep doesn’t paralyse as much as fear does. And in my dreams, I realised that all the people that were still awake had an inflated sense of their own importance. They believed they thought they were still alive and awake and that the world was real. The world was embarrassed to hold them. I was so disgusted that I got up and left the room.

What I saw in the dream stays in the dream; what I felt in the dream stays in the dream; what I heard in the dream stays in the dream; and I hope to god that the stink of the dream stays there too.

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Comments
  1. […] I’d started to smother myself with the pillow; so much so that in my dreams I dreamed of arguments and nightmares until I woke up and burst into tears. That’s what I needed to breathe. I didn’t understand it at the time, but I’d upset myself so that I could wake up. I’d upset myself so that I’d get out of the cold room and start breathing. Read the rest of this entry » […]

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