The Star Rover
All my life I have had an awareness of other times and places. I have
been aware of other persons in me.—Oh, and trust me, so have you, my
reader that is to be. Read back into your childhood, and this sense of
awareness I speak of will be remembered as an experience of your child-
hood. You were then not fixed, not crystallized. You were plastic, a soul
in flux, a consciousness and an identity in the process of forming—ay, of
forming and forgetting.
You have forgotten much, my reader, and yet, as you read these lines,
you remember dimly the hazy vistas of other times and places into
which your child eyes peered. They seem dreams to you to-day. Yet, if
they were dreams, dreamed then, whence the substance of them? Our
dreams are grotesquely compounded of the things we know. The stuff of
our sheerest dreams is the stuff of our experience. As a child, a wee child,
you dreamed you fell great heights; you dreamed you flew through the
air as things of the air fly; you were vexed by crawling spiders and
many-legged creatures of the slime; you heard other voices, saw other
faces nightmarishly familiar, and gazed upon sunrises and sunsets other
than you know now, looking back, you ever looked upon.
Very well. These child glimpses are of other-worldness, of other- life-
ness, of things that you had never seen in this particular world of your
particular life. Then whence? Other lives? Other worlds? Perhaps, when
you have read all that I shall write, you will have received answers to the
perplexities I have propounded to you, and that you yourself, ere you
came to read me, propounded to yourself.
Wordsworth knew. He was neither seer nor prophet, but just ordinary
man like you or any man. What he knew, you know, any man knows.
But he most aptly stated it in his passage that begins "Not in utter naked-
ness, not in entire forgetfulness… "
Ah, truly, shades of the prison-house close about us, the new-born
things, and all too soon do we forget. And yet, when we were new- born
we did remember other times and places. We, helpless infants in arms or
creeping quadruped-like on the floor, dreamed our dreams of air-flight.