I slept for ten hours last night. This is almost unprecedented – it’s been a long, long while since I’ve done so and woken refreshed. Got to the office early and two new professional possibilities came my way before 10AM.
I’ve had a lifelong battle with insomnia and have tested all manner of sleep aids and hypotheses and there is no one-size-fits-all cure. The only “cure” is to not compound lack of sleep with worrying about lack of sleep. I’ve overcome what was a hideous Ambien habit; still take the stuff on occasion but only on occasion. Some of the sordid details are here; many are not, as I was very conscious of not horrifying my mum when I wrote for xojane. In fact, I advised her not to read a few of my pieces as they might make her sad, but she did. They can be awfully stubborn at this age.
In 1994 I rented my first solo apartment in NY – the previous year of living with a roommate eradicated my need to ever do so again, unless said roommate was of the male persuasion. At my housewarming party someone gave me a set of those newly invented poetry refrigerator magnets and we had a contest, probably over shots of Jaegermeister (the mention of which triggers Proustian memories, if madeleines had made Proust want to vomit); this was my entry, which remained on my fridge until I moved:
Sleep I worship after shadows fall beneath the sea. Drunk from love I watch you pant and dream a thousand summer’s deaths.
I submitted it to some online poetry anthology and its was accepted. The power of magnets.