He hadn't slept more than a few hours at a time in over a month, and none of them were peaceful. Each night, funerals. One after another he would arrive at, and eulogize from a pulpit to the mourners. He would almost always wake from these dreams standing on top of his covers, his neck bent and his head tilted against the ceiling as if he were listening to something from the other side.
Now under the covers, his rested body disquieted his mind.
Maybe he's gone. The thought bolted through him. The old man had been sleeping so much that the last time he visited him, he dozed right there in the middle of their conversation. This was terrifying! Always sleeping, no appetite -- how long?! And how would be ever find peace with that void? Now the thought nagged at him, maybe I slept without any funerals because he is gone.
The old man hummed inside from their activity. Like an eardrum, his whole body felt like thin film, reverberating with the energy of them. Was there always this much to do? This much to talk about? As they whirled around him cooking and laughing and assuming wide-legged half-stoops to shadow toddling babies on Bambi legs, he struggled to remember what was so important when he had their forever movement.
His heart remembered. The doctor said it beat too fast - twice as fast as it should. Embedded in the muscle fibers, the energy of all those memories retained. With every beat it rebirthed a piece of the past. Electrical glimpses of the mosaic pulsed through him. His heart's energy made him tired.
He was past the struggle with sleep. His days now were mostly blanketed in a groggy haze. This transition was it's own work, and sleep was the landscape at this stage of the journey.
He was not gone, though he did wonder how long his heart was going to be able to beat for two.