An unmade bed

Unmade bed by Bruce Cohen

Unmade bed by Bruce Cohen

I open one eye, check if it is anywhere near daylight and get up anyway in search of coffee. Maid service would be nice, but although she wears the regulation black and white uniform, Ani makes terrible coffee and I would not trust her with a tray. Or the coffee. And she can’t curtsey.

So I’m awake. I really wish I was one of those lovely people who can turn over and go back to sleep, but I’m not. As soon as the morning strokes my eyes with fingers of light, the mind starts heaving sleepy gears into action and before you know it a train of thought is merrily chugging along at full steam.

Of course, the body may not be so happy about it, lazily appreciating that perfectly-made-bed feeling. You know, the one that is warm, cosy and has never, ever felt so good. The one that makes straightening the covers as you leave them a philosophical question on why we bother to make the bed at all. After all, we have just left perfection, why would we seek to change it by removing all trace of its presence. We leave behind only a vague and fleeting memory and an elusive yearning to return and find that enveloping beauty, that place where the conscious mind lets go and flies into a realm of miracles and impossibilities, into dreams where imagination is the only limitation.

But of course, once you have subtracted yourself from the pile of covers, that perfection has been irretrievably altered. It has been changed, lacking your essential warmth and presence. It is no longer complete, though it is itself still whole without you in it, a testament to its own existence and purpose. Yet the essential ingredient is lacking to fulfil that purpose. It requires your presence, your surrender to its embrace, your agreement and submission to its invitation, before it is again truly whole.

One could speculate about why we have to leave it at all, but obviously, there is work to do, people to meet, love and laughter beyond its confines as well as, occasionally, within them. A bed is such an intimate place, on so many levels really. Who has not curled up in misery, tears streaming and heart aching within its comforting embrace? Or played there as a child plays, full of light and simple joy? Or dreamed those private dreams of the heart.

Our beds seem to know us, moulding to our shape over the years, welcoming us after absence. Even when the mattress is getting a little well worn and the springs get uncomfortable, digging into the tender bits. It doesn’t matter whether they are clothed in silks and rich colour, or simple and white, there is something about them that speaks of home.

We have established, of course, that my mind wanders some convoluted pathways occasionally, so it will come as no surprise that I began comparing my relationship with my bed to that between the Divine and the soul. I’m old fashioned, I call It God.

At birth I left Perfection, though It remains. It holds me through the dark times and shares the bright ones with me. I return to It, awake to Its embrace daily, knowing as I go through the journey of life, learning its ways, that It awaits my return, enriched with experience, encounters, love and tears. In Its warmth as my surfaces sink into that melding, I learn to see behind events and find deeper meaning and beauty, as I trust It to hold me and keep me safe, knowing that in the intimacy and comfort there is rest and peace. There is no separation when the heart knows that perfection awaits.

Feb 2013

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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22 Responses to An unmade bed

  1. While not the message’s intent, this reminds me that I must purchase a new mattress. Thanks for the prompt. (I’m thanking God, too.) And Annie makes coffee?


  2. Ali Isaac says:

    A very beautiful piece of writing. I too love my bed. Last night was a difficult one for me. Waking early wasnt the problem, but falling asleep in the first place. I havent dreamed in ages. Wonder why that is…


  3. I love my bed. It is the only place in the world where I am truly comfortable. Now, if only I could also sleep … THAT would make it perfect. Great post, full of echoes.


  4. kanzensakura says:

    But I’ll bet Ani makes wonderful tea!


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