in my dreams, i am often standing in an empty field of barley. my fingers curl around the bristly heads, as they wait. poised like school paintbrushes to be plucked by warm hands and flung across the country. made into muesli. sloppy soup in frosty bowls that heat an eighteenth century country house like a fire, driving the fever outside. onto the heels of the next village. reappearing. growing. decorative dead things piled in a jar in a caravan window. the sky is flecked with orange peels. pink petals in the clouds. i think i am in Ireland. Wicklow. perched with pursed lips at a red-cheeked muddy-eyed farmer’s breakfast table. there is a ladle on the counter with leaky porridge swaying in its belly. the empty field of barley lies ahead. a postcard humming as it waits. behind my eyes. soon, creamy light. a hazy start. the letterbox clunks as it swallows a fat paper. the ruffles and bangs of the present day. i walk numbly into the movements of living. feast on porridge for breakfast.