Editor’s note: This story was inspired by Margaret Finnegan’s “Slipping”, making it our first call-and-response story!
One unguarded moment and just as First said could happen, someone slips in. That’s the problem with Thought Streaming at yoga. The others are less aware, easier to penetrate, but so am I.
Who wouldn’t be, right behind Clarice while she’s in down dog? One minute sneaking looks and the next thing I know I feel her, what’s her name? Faye? My involuntary sigh as Clarice arched her white leotard back; that’s what did it. Letting out that much made me take in more and that was all Faye needed to enter me.
What did First tell me to do? Something about going to a second level? No, the Below Level. He called it BL.
“Get to BL quick enough” he said, “and while the intruder can still read your Thought Streams, they’ll be garbled.”
That won’t be hard to do. What’s hard is staying focused enough to Thought Stream at all, even more so when watching Clarice.
“Just let go Roy, you’ll drop down and can watch the intruder from BL.”
First is right. I feel like a voyeur. Faye is in but she doesn’t know where and as long as she stays I can watch her in a way not otherwise possible. Does she know that?
First said that Thought Streamers are everywhere but not all know how it works and what to do to protect themselves. I certainly didn’t at first; there is a learning curve to this.
As if yesterday, I remember Thought Streaming my Dad, learning how unhappy he was; that scotch was his way out of reality. At first it scared the hell out of me. A voice talking about my mom and brother and often me, but who’s voice? It took awhile before I connected it to my Dad and only after he thought how bad it was to be out of scotch while still sober.
I can see Faye is confused but I don’t know about what. She has the advantage of being in my Thought Stream and as long as she is, I can’t be in hers. But being on BL means that little I think will make sense to her. If she’s new it will be awhile if ever before she figures that out.
Hmm. I wonder if Dad Thought Streamed? I’ve never considered that before but I am now. What if he could and was good at it, possibly even capable of Thought Streaming someone while they were in him? First never said it couldn’t happen, only what to do when it did. God, what if Dad learned how to Thought Stream while in BL? If he could that would mean he could have worked me; leading me to whatever conclusion he wanted me to reach.
I did feel sorry for him, not at first but soon, the more I listened to his thoughts. Just like Willy Loman, Dad lived a declining existence even before he decided to put aside what little optimism he ever had. Before he knew that the good was past, that as bad as things were the present would soon be seen as better than the future.
Faye is not happy; I think she wishes she’d never entered me. She’s not relaxed and if you’re not relaxing in shava-asana, you’ll never release. She’s lying there but her muscles are tense, exactly the opposite of what should be happening.
“Let go Faye. Let go or get out of me.”
Did she just move? Could I Thought Stream her while she’s in me? If Dad weren’t dead I would ask him. Just call up and say, “Dad, are you a Thought Streamer? It’s OK Dad, you can tell me and if you are, can you show me how to Thought Stream someone while they’re in me?”
But he is dead and there’s no one else to ask so I either need to assume it’s impossible and give up, or try to Thought Stream Faye while she’s still in me.
Concentrating I only see Faye, only hear Faye, can all but feel Faye around me as well as in me. I can tell she’s feverishly attempting to make sense of my Thought Stream even as I think about hers. Will our thoughts meet and if they do what will happen? Maybe a God Particle Big Bang Pasadena mind meld, the outcome of which neither of us could ever fathom. I get chills, I’m scared without really knowing why and sad because I don’t, knowing I never will.
Just like Dad was sad. He never knew and it must have scared him. Day in and day out having to deal with the same old thing, all the things over which he had no control. Only more sadness made only temporarily less so when drinking scotch.
But if he Thought Streamed, if he knew what those around him were thinking about him, about ourselves, what affect would that have had? It wouldn’t have been good, it couldn’t have. We all circled each other in a never-ending stream of unspoken thoughts, my brother and me at first too young to know what was happening followed by all of us knowing, never admitting way too much.
Or did we only think we knew?
Faye is out and more that that, she’s leaving. Not the relaxed visage usually seen at the end of a yoga session. She’s tightly wound, her brow contorted, looking everywhere but at me.
We’re disconnected, I can no longer read her Thought Stream, thinking but unable to say the words:
“Faye please don’t go.”
© Copyright 2009 August. All rights reserved.
August is a man with many accomplishments, including winning 3rd place in the 1957 Emerson Elementary Kite Flying Contest, Novelty Division. This is his first foray into fiction.