There is a white room with one wavy-glass window looking out. It’s in an old house, the kind with window sills and mopboards, and it has white-painted uneven wood floors, and white walls with bumps under your fingers. The door was always open to the sea, and white sheers moved as if in an inaudible conversation. The beach was white; the waves were white. White. It was all white.
From the time I was twelve, I could always come to this place. Quiet. On the left, it had a wooden table and chair where I would write and watch the water. On the right, a single bed, crisp cotton sheets. I could lie flat on my back on the bed and see myself from an ancient Easter day, twirling in the middle of the room, with a little my white hat, white anklets and shoes, white buttoned gloves. Out the window, a pale young woman walked across the beach with a parasol, planting it in front of her, walking slowly past, lifting it and planting it in front of her again. Back in bed, I could lie on my side and inspect the paint on the wall. All curled up, I was safe and calm in white crisp sheets.
I’ve been there again recently. There was nowhere, nowhere to go but my white room. It is beyond any science or art. I study my Crowley cards. If I’m calm when you see me, I’ve been to the white room.
I’ve never gone through the door to the beach.