This entry is part 8 of 40 in the series Pandemic Year


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I don’t remember the dream that woke me, just that it seemed suddenly very important to breathe, and to go on breathing. To go on, despite fear, loneliness or depression. I thought of a stone I’d found on a walk that was too charismatic to just toss aside but which I knew I had no reason to keep, since I’m in the process of moving out (or was, before the pandemic hit). I put it in my pocket, and a moment later took it out again and set it down beside the trail for some child to find, with its red mineral heart outlined in yellow. I thought of Charles Simic’s definition of a stone as a mirror that works poorly.

as if my lungs too
might leaf out


Process notes

I tend not to do much with text animation, but some sort of zoom effect seemed essential, given the strange footage—which I suppose I should explain for anyone who’s completely baffled by it. It’s on the shore of one of the small, seasonal, woodland pools at the top of the watershed. What was happening I think was that this little puddle happened to be situated right beside or on top of a root, or possibly two intertwined roots of adjacent trees. As the wind blew and the trees swayed, the roots were raised and lowered, causing the puddle to grow and shrink.

Either that, it was just haunted.

They say that the pandemic is causing people all over the world to have unusually vivid, frightening dreams. My dreams have always been pretty vivid, so I can’t say I’ve really noticed a difference.

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