photo by Liz Graham

From the Camel’s Mouth

I stood in a high place, both a church and a courthouse. Dark masonry covered the walls, while light flowed through stained glass windows in splashes of yellow, pink and blue. Respectful quiet permeated the space.

Before me stood three camels. Their size and the muskiness of their scent drove me back a step. A commotion broke out among the handlers of the one to my right. They spoke in rapid dialog in a language I didn’t understand, but their distress was evident none-the-less.

Something was stuck in the camel’s mouth. It knelt before me and its mouth opened like a computer-generated image. I hesitated a moment, then reached in with both my hands.

My fingers closed around an abundance of long, slender objects. They slipped as I gathered them and pulled them from the opening. Light fell across my hands, revealing pencils, pens and paintbrushes, too many to count. Again I reached into the camel’s mouth, withdrawing a second bundle and then a third.

The load was more than I could comfortably hold. I glanced around for a place to lay my burden. A door stood ajar off to one side. I entered to find court in session, the judge in her raised chair at the front. I glanced around quickly, not wanting to disturb the proceedings. No shelf, counter or cabinet presented itself.

The judge caught my eye and gave an almost imperceptible shake of her head. With that, I understood the bounty from the camel’s mouth was mine to keep.

This is the dream that directed me to write, “Passing Rain,” my story relating the events in my life from late 2004 through 2006. I interpreted the dream as saying the camels represented those three years. I researched dream meanings for camel and both “long hard journey” and “great sadness” struck a chord in me. I’d pulled creative tools and writing implements from the camel’s mouth (the mouth representing expression/communication). I had my directive. I had to write about those years.

My memoir is complete. Now what? Follow my journey here and discover with me where this project will land. Will it catch the interest of a mainstream publisher? Will I self publish it? I don’t yet know, but I trust it will end up where it is meant to be and if the only purpose in my writing this was for my own cathartic process, then I’ve accomplished that, at least. For my daughter, Jessie’s sake (aka Rain), though, I do hope our story will touch at least one other life and make all she experienced that much more meaningful.

Read an excerpt from “Passing Rain” here.

25 thoughts on “From the Camel’s Mouth”

  1. Thanks for reaching out and sharing your blog! I just subscribed and look forward to reading more. Wishing you the best of luck!

  2. Dorene, SO happy to see that you’re writing and thrilled that you sent me the link to your blog and site! It’s fabulous. Replying with many, many big hugs!!! I have subscribed. 🙂 Want to stay in touch better.

  3. “Light fell across my hands, revealing pencils, pens and paintbrushes, too many to count…”

    I love that descriptive moment. All the world is your canvas and I look forward to seeing what works of wonder you will create.

    1. Thanks, Mike! I love the image, too. In fact, I had a photo shoot with my very talented older daughter where she shot pictures of my hands holding lots of pens, pencils and paintbrushes. I’m hoping to soon have pictures from that shoot to use here and elsewhere on my website. I’m being patient, though. She’s a busy girl and did I mention talented? Photography is just one of her many creative pursuits. Did I mention she recently sold her first major painting? No? She did. 🙂 Can you tell I’m a proud mom? Here’s a link to some of her art for anyone who’s interested:

      1. Thank you for sharing that link! What extraordinary work– you should be proud!!! I’m in awe of the fact she is talented in so many different mediums. Some of the art reminded me of two all-time favourite artists of mine (Arthur Rackham and Mike Ploog). However, in closing, I wish you had warned me I’d leave the site craving Dark Chocolate and Pecan Macaroons. 😉

Would love to hear from you! Please let me know your thoughts.