In my dreams, there is a door that can never be opened, a room that I can see but never enter.
Last night, I dreamed about a house that I have never lived in, but yet refer to as my "childhood house" because it is similar to the house I grew up in, and when I dream about it, I am young again. It was a bad dream last night. I dreamed that there was a little alleyway that I could get to from a door in the back corner of my bedroom. It is crowded with stuff: garbage cans, rusting bicycles, bags of rotting, raked-up leaves. I stood in the back corner of this alleyway and watched a train of children go by. There were four of them, two boys who were maybe 8 and 6 years old, and two girls, who were about 10 and 4. All of them were dirt-smeared, little urchin children. The older girl was the only one I looked at, and the only one who looked at me, square in the face. She was pretty, in a way, and looked the wisest, carrying a sturdy fallen branch as a walking stick. In the dream, I knew that they were the children of the family that lived across the street from mine. As they left, I somehow managed to knock over one of the garbage cans, which was filled with a gray, ashy silt. In the back of my head, I remembered hearing someone say that the father of those children had murdered a "hooker" (the exact word I used in my dream, the only one that stands out) and had burned her corpse. I looked at the ashes, saw scraps of cloth from a satin dress, and knew that it was true. I ran from the alleyway, tripping over a ragged blanket and scattering the ashes into the ground and the clutter of the alley. I ran into my room and jumped up onto my bed, but I left the door to the alleyway open. I could see from my bed that the alley was now a hallway, and that just outside the door to my bedroom, on the back wall of the hall, was another door. I knew it was a door to a room I have dreamed about before.
In a previous dream, that door lead to a sort of small, 4-season porch/sitting room area with big windows where I could see inside. It was decorated with furniture from the 60's or 70's, in garish colors of gold and avocado and orange. There was a big old wood-grained television with dials on the front to select the channel, and a low, dark wood table in front of the sofa with a round white doily in the center. I knew it was a room where my mother went on occasion, to dust, but it was a room that we never used that that I was never allowed to enter, because for my mother it held too many painful memories of her parents, my grandparents, who (at least in real life) all died before I was 2. I coould see the room through the windows, watch the chairs go unused and the room go cold and dead for lack of anything to fill it up.