In the poet Emily Dickinson’s numerous letters, there was a phrase that stands out boldly: Nature is a haunted house. Yes, Nature is that, and Emily Dickinson (1830 – 1886) knew it intuitively. I oftentimes sense image overlap in a kind of inner planes directional message system, coming to us in numerous ways which Nature with its infinite wisdom gives us in the images best suited to each of us.
Once upon a time in the 1960s, I worked with a young man named Vic. He was tall, androgynous in physical appearance, twenty-six years old, and a natural blond. His blond hair reflected the hair color of an individual who spent a life in the sun, outdoors, and on the beach. I recall he always would say that old American proverb: Save your nickels and dimes in case a flood comes.
Well, Vic was a character and full of life. He lost his life in a drowning accident. That was back in the late 1960s. Nature forgets nothing, catalogs everything.
Now, upon awakening this morning, I came away with a dream so intact that I sensed it was a clairvoyant sending. I found myself on a beach, and in the distance, here came Vic wearing a white dress coat with high collar and matching white slacks — it was the type of clothes fashion in the late 1960s patterned after those worn in India. He was wearing leather sandals and no socks. He came right beside me and said: “You and Debra save your nickels and dimes, and I will protect you from the flood coming to Oklahoma!” What type of flood, I thought to myself, but he was gone as quickly as he had arrived.
I woke from the pleasant encounter and shared the story with my wife, Debra. We both lay in bed together wondering what type of flood was coming. A flood can be anything, not always water. A flood of horrible weather disasters, an invasion, what? I had not thought of Vic for decades, why this warning from beyond the grave at this point in time… I wonder!
Nature is a haunted house. We are each playing both a ghost role and a living role within its remarkable structure. There is room for everything there to be encountered. Some good encounters, some not so good. But it is what humans are attracted to, and curiosity is what humans do best.
Thanks for the visit, Vic. It was good to see you again on November 28, 2005. I am glad you still have that zest and verve for living which I remember most about you.