©Trish Tunney
©Trish Tunney

In her dream, the child can fly. It’s simply a trick of the mind, a certain psychological angle of attack. In the most diverse situations, dull or fantastic, she delights in discovering that angle, spreading her arms, and leaping into the sky. Beyond her will, however, is the rapturous dreamscape itself, all-embracing, “alive, full of the beauty of Ugly and the beauty of Dark,” that drips and runs like wet paint if she defiles it with wanting. Waking, she tries to describe that beauty, words fail her, and she begins to cry.

But one day, grown up now, with eyes wide open, she runs and leaps off a cliff in Dunlap, California—and falls up. The mystic dreamscape quickens her bones, and her eyes tear. The air loves her. It swells the polychrome canopy, her sail, as she soars nearly to the clouds in a subtle conversation with the wind, a conversation in a language of squints and tucks and tugs on nylon cords.

“Can I ask you a question, Wind?”

“I’ve got nowhere to be. You can ask me all the questions you want.”

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