steal the light from day, watch the shadows lengthen over the horizon. gloom sweeps in, earlier and earlier every night, readying for calm.
it’s tranquil, watching the last rays of twilight melt into dark cloudy evening and finally it’s time for the light to come on. it won’t last long, but while it does, be sure to absorb every little detail around you. so the light goes off, you’re operating on autopilot because it’s that time of night and all the little neurons are telling you that you should be wearying, should be easing your mind down into sleep.
they don’t listen to themselves though.
deprived of light, the room is blacked out perfectly. it’s far back enough from the street that you only see a thin strip of light from the closest lamp, isolated enough that the neighbours’ outside lights don’t pollute your darkened environment.
this is a system where you should be able to relax into winding off your mind, closing it down not unlike the curtains you drew across three hours before. here is the problem: with sight locked out, the other senses take over. smell, the phantom scent of a perfume; hear through your mind’s ear how a voice sounds when it’s answering the phone and visualize the placement of a random sentence which has suddenly popped into your head.
this is a system where you deprive yourself of one sense and two more come to life.
from here it dovetails. the taste of honey-sweetened peppermint tea lingers on your lip; the bedclothes become too heavy and too light and too chilled all at once.
put on headphones. they shut out the noise from the street, and the even tones of the sleep meditation encourage you to focus on nothing else. it doesn’t matter though, because in the end just one word is enough to trigger an avalanche of memories. it’s easy to slip on an eye-mask, one which you made yourself, contouring the lines perfectly to fit your eyes and blot out the thinnest bit of ghost-light through the curtains, easy to inhale your own familiar perfume, strategically placed for maximum impact.
here is the second problem: adapting. soon enough you’re so used to it that you’re strategizing about maximum efficiency, working out what else in your routine might help.
(the short answer is nothing)