ATP (A Thousand Plateaus) PA (Pneuminous Accretion)

Plateau 10 of ATP discusses various types of becoming. Of particular interest is the discussion becoming-animal and the way in which we can relate this to events. We are told there are three kinds of animal or rather three modes, for these are not types. There are oedipalized animals (pets), state animals of classification and myth and there are demonic animals of pack and affect. All animals are capable of being any of these; this is not a taxonomy.

Here we wish to use a similar schema upon events. We can apply the same triple structure to them. There are the oedipalized regular events of our daily lives, there are state events of the news, of (established) science, of history and there are anomalous demon events. The anomalous events do of course encompass the paranormal ones, though they also pertain to the anomalous aspects of science where its bleeding molecular edge exists. In one sense paranormal events and the anomalies of science are very similar. The difference is purely a matter of scale and acceptance. It is not even fair to say science does not wish to engage with paranormality, it certainly tries to test it rigorously, yet cannot do justice to its experiential dimension and either cannot detect (because it is correct and they are not ‘real’ or cannot yet find the means to detect what is going on in these phenomena). However, the anomalies of science are usually thought of as those unanswered questions, those papers of research at the periphery that suggest something may not be quite right, within a given accepted discipline (major science).

The demon events are those ones that befall us and can bring about the agnostic disjunctive state of reflection (see PA document) in which we literally cannot tell if we can ascribe anything anomalous to the experience or not. These too exist on a spectrum, from the mildest of knowing-who-is-going-to-call-because-you-were-just-thinking-about-them, to the full blown physical manifestation of otherworldly entities.

All events, like animals can be considered in packs, they are understood as some kind of event -they are coded and overcoded. Paranormal events have almost a meta-status in this regard, for the event is already a becoming. It is paradoxical, it is comprehended as an event and yet it is a purely ephemeral occurrence. The event is subjectified becoming. This means it accretes pneuma by its affective power.

The synchronicity (for example) is an event, it is a subjectified event which immediately accretes. It accretes pneuma as synchronicity. That is synchronicity itself is a PA formed by Jung. A named gathered the intensity, accreted other PAs into it, bound pneuma into this incoherent form. Whether we call it synchronicity or not, it’s nature is recognised throughout the world and history. The event that looks like some kind of interference, whether it be from our psychic selves, the gods, the spirits, UFOs. Is it always a demons event? Is it always anomalous? It is anomalous only in relation to the other assemblages. In the western pneuminous set up the synchronicity is anomalous and, as stated, it is meaningful only to the experiencer (it is subjectified).

The content and expression of the synchronicity can be shown thus:

Content Substance:                 The various PAs that the synchronicity is formed of.

Content Form:                         The web of relations that ties these PAs together that renders the synchronicity meaningful.

Expression Substance:            In the occurrence of the event, the elements of that event, the place, the time, the relevant coded things.

Expression Form:                    The experience as anomaly.

As anomalous the synchronicity is a demon event. It is at the edge of the pack of events. But what is the pack? The pack are all the regular events the support the smooth continuity of existence as solid, that reinforce God’s eye like perspectives. The demon event shows the edge of this understanding, yet because it exists at the level of event, it is already part of becoming —events are becomings. The demon event exists at the edge of events themselves, deterritorializing the continuous space of materiality and epiphenomenal conceptuality and reterritorializing it with the pneuminous conception of active conceptuality. The demon event is anomalous precisely because it breaks the rules of space and time and shows that there are connecting lines that cut across in directions we do not understand, and that, under some circumstances, these lines can restructure what appeared to be solid.

In becoming animal, any animal can display all three modes (Oedipal, State, Demonic), is this also true of any event? This is the case. It is simply the expression of the even that shifts. Any event can be taken as anomalous insofar the same structure is always there. The ineffable force of the umbratic lurks behind all events. Every PA is always the double of the vector field overlaying the umbratic. The demonic forces work continuously if one wishes to understand them this way —this is true of Oedipal or State events.

Demon events always belong to becoming. They always open the way for a new line. One may listen to the demon event and obey its suggestion. One may find the demon event opens the way to a new understanding. Of course demons can be deceptive and demon events are the most deceptive. The lines they open are what we have elsewhere called agnostic disjunctive. They may bring amazing new connections, ruin or nothing. Their umbratic nature (their mechanism) is entirely obscured and ranges in possibility from brute chance to the most strange and instantaneous arrangements of territory we can scarcely conceive of.

Please note, this post follows on from this post which in turn refers to this document on pneuminous accretive theory..

ii)

The next integration we need to achieve is the content/expression description of a being of awareness (BOA) as a PA (pneuminous accretion). We are trying to steer clear of making an identity of life and a BOA in order to account for BOAs that may not be considered alive. This does mean that the kind of classification will differ again between organic and (what Castaneda called) inorganic beings —to this we might also add beings that are physically deceased whose pneuminous structures persist (ghosts).

Organic beings of awareness (OBOAs) can be considered on a continuum in relation to their ability to manipulate pneuma into accretions. The manipulation of pneuma belongs to the form of expression. The substance of content is also conceivable on a similar spectrum, whilst the other two categories can be thought of as staying effectively the same (form of content and expression of substance) for any OBOA.

The two invariant structures of the OBOA are:

Content form:                          Underlying codes -genetic/electrical/unknown

Expression substance:             Cells, organs, bodies, nervous systems

As mentioned the form of expression can be heuristically be broken down into three stages of pneuminous manipulation.

  1. Performs an extremely simple manipulation of pneuma that scarcely accretes it. The organism shows some vector field differentiation insofar as it seeks an energy source and may respond to certain kinds of stimuli. Insofar as it encodes these stimuli and energy types it can be said to be forming various simple PAs.
  2. Has a complex relationship to its environment, differentiating between a wide array of stimuli (vector field regions). It seeks energy sources, shelter, safety (avoids threats), may indulge in leisure/play, can problem solve, experience emotion. It can communicate in a sign system with other OBOAs in 1 step communication -it can communicate a sign but not the sign of a sign. These things are possible because it has temporal encoding (memory) of a complex order. This means its ability to accrete pneuma is considerable. Many vector regions will receive small pneuminous accretions from such an OBOA. A process resembling subjectification may well occur, which will form a similar kind of emotionally imprinted PA (a feared predator, a safe hole e.g.). There will also be some formation of something resembling a free-floating PA owing to the 1 step communication, as this is still going to form some kind of PA thread at a physical distance from the vector.
  3. An extremely complicated catalogue of recognised stimuli (vector field regions). Seeks energy, shelter, safety. Can problem solve in a highly abstract manner, play, develop complex abstract play, produce complex culture, develop mathematical abstraction and apply it, has a complex emotional component. Can communicate multiple step communication -can communicate the sign of a sign and potentially more. Produces complicated communication/data storing systems. Can temporally encode vast amounts of complex information. This means its capacity to manipulate pneuma is huge and its ability to form PAs vast. A hugely complicated array of vector regions will be differentiated not simply on spatial fronts but also on abstract ones. Incredibly complex relations will form between these PAs in the way they various connect and overlap with each other in the dynamic constant alteration of the BOW. The vector regions to which the accretions are attached will shift as PA possibilities increase or decrease. On local levels many vector regions will receive strong subjective (as in subjectification) PA attachments complicating the picture further. In addition, this kind of OBOA also ascribes unique names to many kinds of vector regions, including other OBOAs. This imprints PAs into the OBOA regions which have complex feedback mechanisms.

This tripartite heuristic does not identify any specific biological entity range, but rather aims at delineating three places on a continuum of ability to manipulate pneuma. Having said this, the stage (iii) OBOA is clearly something like a human.

Since everything we experience is formed within human pneuminous structures, the OBOA is likewise. The OBOA is a PA but it is a PA whose vector region both takes the description of an OBOA and has some underlying structure that makes this possible (a nervous system, though nervous system of course is also a PA).

Similar lines can also be drawn out of an OBOA PA as extended from a non-aware PA. Because the pneuminous surface generates the idea of the beyond, this beyond (the umbratic -see document on PAs) either actually exists in some incomprehensible way or is near identical to the structure unearthed by the pneuminous interaction except for the double motion of subtraction and addition. The pneuminous grasp adds the accretive layer of pneuma to the vector region (which plugs into the umbratic) but in the grasping of necessarily only the partial, the pneuminous grasp is subtractive of the rest of the umbratic.

Thus since the OBOA is formed as a PA, this PA is attached to a vector region and thus to the umbratic. The OBOA then, as PA, is only partially grasped by itself and by other OBOAs. As such the OBOA itself has a tendency towards absolute mystery which is obscured when the PA is perceived as totally exhaustive of the vector region. This is not the idle epistemic mystery of OOO or something similar, this rather pertains to the paranormal possibility of absolute otherworldly interactions.

The OBOA also has the almost opposite direction of subjectification. The OBOA is constantly having accretive layers formed onto it, both by itself and by other OBOAs. These are the intensive attachments that it and the other OBOAs form about it. In the system of things (normal physical PAs) subjectification picks out one amongst potentially many and accretes pneuma to it (a memory, and attachment). In the case of OBOAs, all of them are subjectified by each other. Of course, not everyone is subjectifying everyone, but everyone is being subjectified by someone, even the lonely are often being subjectified exactly as lonely. Thus especially the OBOA type (iii) accretes many PAs.

In this way we can see the tripartite heuristic of the substance of content though we note that for all three the substance -of the content for type (iii) OBOAs must in some sense be that of the umbratic and also the vector field (which is formed of unaccreted (or unstratified) pneuma) since one bleeds seamlessly into the other.

  1. Reflects no PAs back upon itself. Constituted by PAs projected upon it either at the simple stimuli level or by investigation from type (iii) OBOAs e.g. doing science.
  2. Such an OBOA partially reflects accretions back onto itself to constitute a self (e.g. memory of its own image). Is mostly constituted by the PAs projected onto it by other OBOAs. Other OBOAs of a similar type (this does not mean biological genus) will form PAs of such OBOAs.
  3. OBOAs of this kind are constituted both by the PAs projected onto them and by the PAs that they project onto themselves. Thus the act of believing you are one kind of person and someone else believing you are another are both competing pneuminous forces exerting partial determinacy of yourself (PA of the self).

Thus the notion of subjectification applies most relevantly to the type (iii) OBOA. Subjectification in the case of things pertained to OBOAs having accreted pneuma to them under certain circumstances owing to affective encounters with relatively unaccreted PAs e.g. a rock is just a rock which is still a PA but its discovery on a beach by a child and transformation into a special rock, from that holiday, subjectifies the rock. In the case of OBOAs (iii) they subjectify each other intensively (by affect) constantly, variously hating, being attracted to, being made happy by, laughing with/at, considering stupid, considering wise, considering ugly, being that person who did that thing on that day etc. Some of these accretive layers are sustained by the PA of the self and some sustained by others.

This multiplicity of pneuminous interactions exerts a constant real (magickal) effect upon the OBOA causing it to adhere (albeit slightly) to the nature of the PA (see the writing on the double in the document on PA theory). This occurs because pneuma is a force that operates at an ontological level unlike regular physical forces as we understand them.

These notes are not a definitive position but rather reflect the current state of a process.

Content, Expression and the Structure of Pneuminous Physical Objects.

It appears productive to try to synthesize PA theory with some of the concepts found in Deleuze and Guattari’s Thousand Plateaus. Here the focus is on the possibility of employing some of the language of content and expression that D & G borrow from Hjelmslev.

To briefly recap for anyone new to it pneuminous accretive theory unambiguously exists to propose an account of most paranormality where paranormality is presupposed to be ‘real’ in the sense of something other than current science understands and not something subsumable under neuroscience or otherwise. This does not mean such a belief is held, rather it says that if the phenomena are real then something like pneuminous accretive theory is probably the only place for occultism to retreat to. In this way it is a phenomenology of the appearance of the phenomena under the auspice of rational belief.

The explanation that PA offers is to say that conceptuality should be conceived as a quasi-substance that is attached to regions of existence. The presence of this substance (pneuma) is not some inert force only held within the subject but rather something present in what we call the object or the external. The plug-in of concepts (pneuminous accretions) into regions of being, under certain circumstances can cause radical shifts in existence that we call magick or paranormal phenomena. In short, usually what we think of as the solidity of the world does indeed determine the concepts, but sometimes the reverse happens.

How can we begin then, to translate or engage pneuminous accretions (PAs) with the process language of ATP. The first thing we can try to do is to note that since pneuma is considered to make things (accretions) it has this quasi-substantiality to it. In the Geology of Morals we are asked to consider three kinds of strata: the physical, the organic and the linguistic. Following this line of analysis we can ask ‘can pneuma be thought of in the sense of strata and what would this look like? At a glance it would seem to be hybrid of the linguistic and the physical strata, minimally it will draw on these two elements, though maybe the organic stratum will yet have more to do with it.

Let us consider a particular pneuminous accretion and see if it will be illustrative. The pen on my desk is a PA. Through the original use word pen, I have come expand the rule for pen to many instances. The multiple possibility is the accretion, though it may present itself to me in image as a contingent archetypal form e.g. a biro. The pen accretion is attached to a vector region. By vector region we just mean a region of existence that must in this case be capable of taking the pen accretion. I cannot pick up the mouse and pass it to someone who asked for the pen. I cannot apply the pen accretion to the vector region that would normally take the accretion mouse. The pen accretion will only (aside from the magickal act of trying to attach the pen accretion to another region for whatever reason) attach to those vector regions that allow for the rules of it -hand holdable, can write or at least used to write. When I see the pen, I literally see the accretion (in the language of hermeneutic phenomenology: everything is already interpreted). I see the concept not the vector region. The only difference here (to hermeneutic phenomenology) is that we are hypothesizing that the concept we see is a substance imprinted into the vector region i.e. it is ontologically altering the vector as opposed to being inert (purely psychological) in relation to it.

How can we begin to understand this in terms of the language of ATP? If we are speculating that there is an active force/substance that is conceptuality (pneuma) then we can initially ask: what is the substance and form of content and what is the form and substance of expression of an accretion?

Before we can answer this, we must supply the caveat that the answer may be quite specific to a certain kind of accretion. In this case it is a human-formed physical object. The PA structure could be though of as something like this:

Content substance: Smooth pneuma (the vector field region see the PDF linked above), the possibility of the pen region existing without being processed as a pen.

Content form: Possible structuring codes, designs.

Expression substance: The PA as it is described as a physical, comprised on analysis of composite PAs which tend towards the limits of our ability to enumerate/taxonomize these.

Expression form: The use ability of the object and the appearance of it, the name of it.

To this structure we must add two extending movements. The first of these is the line that extends from both kinds of substance. Content substance is marked as the vector field region. This, in the case of a human-formed object is the region of the objected re-imagined after the object’s creation as not the object but just an unknown nothingness. This is the vector field region into which the PA is projected. Expression substance is described as comprising of the composite PAs that we may analyse the PA into. Both of these categories tend towards the umbratic region i.e. the totally unknowable beyond current scientific and perceptual taxonomies. This line is necessary, for it is here that connection to mystery obtains. The potential that the region can connect to obscure parts of existence the anchor between the PA and the depths of existence that need to be manipulated in order to bring about anomaly.

The second movement is an exit most clearly thought of as from the level of form of expression. This is the line of subjectification (to borrow and slightly adjust a term for ATP). Subjectification pertains to the interaction between a being of awareness and the PA. What we mean by this is attachment to objects of any kind. This attachment is the formation of more layers of pneuma —memories. This formation of ‘special’ objects. In this way the line of subjectification is also related to paranormality. In particular we are thinking here of magickal objects and relatedly the ability to magickally interact with objects and or people at a distance. Subjectification is the accreting of pneuma that allows for the PAs particular identification —most usually through its name  This has in mind specifically human type beings of awareness, though we do not deny it may happen in others too. The accretion of subjectifying pneuma occurs in the use history of the object in relation to other PAs (e.g. of people/events). Its notable (intensive) interactions accrete pneuma to it, meaning it is not simply psychologically special/unique it is also ontologically-magickally (pneuminously) so.

By Jim Meirose

It wasn’t supposed to start this way, but since you insisted, here are your team’s assigned purposes. Nyah, nyah; get, from the kitchen, a raritangle of chopped bosnias served on a belch of kleenex on a clean plate toward each paying customer—who will be labeled as such—because, Das Minotour, risen in off the sea, told each quite clearly; here it is, citizens; Pacha’ pounded on, pounding, pounding out with, but ended up nonetheless shouting, like always, Everybody! All of you! Come here, get this drip; anyphase, after my establishblink up Back City, they said what d’we do for foodie and drankdowns, but—they are stupid. With rare exception—always very stupid. And, even though the big senior class mathematically specialized finals are over, but, still, always; yes, always. No egg’sathrecisation! Plus, my God, ‘s being me ‘ly myself, of course, as usual, it’s spilled out all over here. At exactly the next six p.m., like all of you do once a day. All of you, ‘cause of you. 

Spill it all out over here once a day!  

Jesus Christ! Swear to God! As D’ Spanish Tyrant’s big Rant’n Rave! Why must it take this to teach you? Why? Why? So? What the ‘uck?  

But. 

Even so, we’re confident the more robust among you, your quietly solid core of noncomplainants, will crisply start over, as, new fresh; so; so-o, this; so-o-o he, new fresh; as’d this; and as’d ‘it off-gain; so-o-o, and this restart’s well-advised at this juncture, partly because two time signatures are normally used in this kind of attempt, yas yas, so-o, to provide a satisfying end for each and every listener with no sexteptions.  

Hip!  

Fat hooey.  

You should not find this necessity surprising, since we all swore to God, then, that ess, God hun-self had made it so-so, guvvernmendt men thrust f’um his bush, stating, We know your plight, we are here to help, like all’s of those always react, of course. That’s their reason—though it seems most laborious, twisty and non-intuitiviteed. And, most of you already may know what we said, what they said, back then, that, Your Back City is speckulumly unicornique, and muss’ be hairy-served, often as daily r’ hourly or more, so—you need to know, eh, new fresh; got to know, eck eh, new fresh; will be told, rip, ‘cause that’s my mission. This swamp’s a devil; does not want you here; strains to—no, no, look into the black greenie face of the solidified stinking rotmass o’ Back City swamp and we won’t need to tell you, you’ll see for yourself, that it’s coming. It and all its big stink of a past implies, entails, or—quite simply, means. For God’s sake, insurer. You’ve a brain, you will see; day and night, it strives to take you. New fresh. It’s coming. Sure as knot soup. New fresh. Take you. Take you. What hard words these; it comes to take you. 

That simple. Simple as; 

‘m new lin-n’geries, to b-bail!  

Yope. 

As this’s-ll perfectly circular and intentavittebelle right now, contact local law enforcement immediately local law immediate-hic local enforcement. Local. Hic. Of the law. 

Yes! I said! Enforcement! With an e! Because, if Das Minotour risen in off the sea comes up to save, but can’t never, if that’s ‘t, all’s done for. You, too. Run fast now. 

What?    

Run fast. Right now—buh huh, wuss; huh. New fresh. Uh! B-b’, s’ ‘ot soo f’st; so what, ess, ‘s, so. Move over there just a tiny ‘fore you go, though, would you? I need to reach those things over there. Sure. But, I may not go. I really do feel good, but—someplace down deeper, I’m not glad I do. You know?  

Not really. 

You know? You know? You— 

Han’ d’ d’ palmup! 

Okay, Willy. Stop. Calm down. Der booster’s widdyu, okay? Now, anyway; so since you’re too stubborn to take the easy way out, gi’in that, then so, know that much like you, struggling Pachasandrim pushed on relentlessly with that very same shriek-type, waving down all the while; ‘cause it sank into her there’s a sea on the tipside, and a swamp on the glandside. If they press together, she might just canc-l-null downdyflop. Abracadabra! And so, then imagine, if their deeply elemental untiring strive to engulf Back City crashed together right ‘top your great big central city hall, and whirlwring yo’ round themselves big and tight, you’ll all engulf each other, and all you two ‘s well, transforming most instantly into multiple deep flows of peagreen calm slush! 

Oh—like slap? 

Yep! Like slap! And then, like probably, this Big One Production operation will, then, ‘ig its vacuum t’ rush in takin’ your surviving crowd, if any, down a murmur or two; here or there. Or partial, if s’. But—hope’s her-e, and hey. Read that off that tallyscroll up there. It says;  

Current denizens. Do it now. S’create non-account. 

S’create non-account. S’create it now. All current denizens. 

All currently registered denizens use “TFFKJXC376BQM24K37M89KMWM” to s’create your non-account now, or, yes be denied, yes, be denied, yes be-ee-e-e-e, denie—d-d-d-d— 

New fresh. 

What? Phooey! 

Schratcha-count newly cr-reated! Gosh oh gee. So jot down these details. Oop. Where’s my sharpened das yellowish pinckle? An m’ blankiedink’d-papro? There—one of those—of those nonessential kinds. That whole stack can be wasted without a worry. Write that down. That code’ll always get you in, but, my God, again. It’s spilled out all over here, again; what the ‘uc’? Oh, hokay. Blue bumble, by gosh, I always— 

Calm down. Sit that slap-panel. 

What? There? Why? 

Because. Do not always run off with yourself—stop! Bad habit. Here, do not worry. By use of your own fully exact unique key, regardless of your tote or your styles, you’ll always be let back in. 

Sure? 

Yas, see. See? Do you see? 

Of maybe, but. 

Oh, come on; what I mean, Martin. Get it up. Think a little. 

But; why? They said Das Minotour’s risen in off the sea. 

It’s—nah, nah. But hey. My God it spilled out all over here; what the ‘u’? That happens every single time. Don’t you care? Yes, of course; that happening every single time’s why we the guvernoir-mente hass com to bail from you. New fresh. ‘cause, Das terrible Minotour’s risen in off the sea. Eighteen-sixteen for the—wait, oh mosh, we need to survive, eh, but we just hit the bricks, eh, ahhhhhhh, ahhhhhhhhhh! Das terrible! Oh, Minotour’s mosh risen in we just off the t’ hit the sea bricks, ahhhhhhh. Too weak! Too weak! Why does this happen again and again? 

Who’s to blame? 

Oof! 

Y’ know. But—poor Martin. Good God, he ought of got it. Knew better. Y’ know? 

Yes. But not all can always be saved. 

‘n the truth. New fresh. Tube. Poor Martin indeed. But he’s only the first. When the killer which cuts its own arms with its knife makes long wet red lines down its forearms, it’s time then to immediately call the police. But, yet; it’s funny how I feel that’d also be—wrong. 

Overkill? That, you mean? 

Yep. The first. 

Nah. Nonsense. No one’s ever that simple; only Begobah. 

New fresh. New fresh. 

By Laurence Raphael Brothers 

For a long time, I used to go to bed early…. 

I shut the book. The opening of Swann’s Way was so familiar that I could summon an image of the first page from memory. There was hardly any point to reading the printed words. 

“Hey,” said the woman. “I was in the middle of that.” 

She was reading over my shoulder in bed. I realized this was a dream, one of the sort that Proust wrote about on the first page of his great work. Marcel (not Proust!) describes how he used to summon imaginary women into his dreams as a sickly youth. 

Having realized I was dreaming, I took stock of my situation. The linen undersheet was cool and smooth, and the white quilted comforter which covered the two of us was even more pleasant. I could feel her breath in my ear. I didn’t know who the woman was. I didn’t want to turn to face her. I was afraid of what I might see. 

“Hey!” She poked me in the side, not hard, though. “The book,” she said. “Open the book.” 

“What?” This was more initiative than I was used to from people in dreams. 

“I was in the middle,” she said. “Open it back up and let me read it.” 

The book’s gilt-edged pages gleamed in the dim candlelight. It was heavy for its size, with maroon leather covers chased in gold. There was no title or other printing on the cover or spine, but I knew it was mine and that I’d had it for a long time. 

I felt a little uneasy about the situation, so I temporized. “Why do you want to read it? There’s no way we’re getting through even a single volume of Proust in one night.” 

“But we were reading together,” she said. “Please.” She moved her hand to my shoulder. It felt nice, but I hesitated anyway. 

Maybe she sensed my reluctance because she sighed. “It’s not really Proust. But it’s got all of Proust in it that you remember, and all of every other book you remember too. And more besides.” 

“And you want me to give it to you.” 

“No!” she cried. “You mustn’t do that!” 

“What? First you say you want it, then you don’t.” 

“I want to read it with you. You could guide me through it.” 

“Please,” I said. “Give me a hint, at least. I don’t understand at all.” Talking over my shoulder at her was annoying, but I had the feeling I shouldn’t turn toward her. It was a very strong feeling. 

“Look,” she said, “if you have an infinite thing and you give it to me, you won’t have infinity yourself anymore. You wouldn’t like that. It would be bad for you.” 

“That’s kind of you, I guess, but I still don’t know why you want to read it.” 

“All I know is I’ve lost something. And I think maybe you can help me find it again.” 

“Lost something? Like a memory? That’s the only thing you can find in a book.” 

She hugged me then and laughed in delight. 

“Yes! Now I remember. I don’t have a book of my own. I lost it, somehow.” 

“I get it,” I said. “Proust is all about recalling lost memories. The madeleine. His mother’s kiss goodnight. Gilberte; Mademoiselle Swann. And if you read the book–” 

“If I read your book. Everyone has a book that contains all the things they know, all the things they care about. Well, almost everyone. I guess I lost mine. But I bet your book has lots about memory and stuff like that in it. Because you love Proust so much. And if I read it–” 

“You can find your own book again?” 

“I hope so.” 

“Okay,” I said. “Let’s read it together.” 

She scooched up to better look over my shoulder, and I moved the book to where she could read it more easily. And then I felt it happening. The dream was coming to an end. Things were already turning gray and fuzzy. Soon I’d lose her and she’d lose me and the book too. 

I turned to face her and I had no problem doing that, but my vision had deteriorated to the point I could barely make her out; just a vague silhouette. And yet I thought I knew her. I thought I remembered her from a time long gone. From when I was young, perhaps. I held the book out to her. 

“Quick! Take it!” 

“But–” 

“I know! Just do it! This could be your only chance!” 

She reached out and I let her take the book…. Her fingers brushed against mine, and we fell away from one another into darkness. 

I awoke in my own real bed, alone, with no woman, and no– what? I couldn’t remember. I managed to get to my feet despite the gaping hole in my head where things I’d treasured had once resided. As I rose the dream faded and I could barely recall it at all. Something to do with Proust…. I fumbled for my copy of Swann’s Way there on the nightstand. It seemed I’d never read the final page before. Tears ran down my face and I didn’t know why. I blinked them away and the last line came clear in my vision. 

…remembrance of a particular form is but regret for a particular moment; and houses, roads, avenues are as fugitive, alas, as the years.