Continued fractions

\[26 + \frac{1}{5 + \frac{1}{12 + \frac{1}{12 + \frac{1}{25 + \frac{1}{14 + \cdots}}}}} \]

Last night I lay thinking of Continued Fractions, trying to understand not just the notation, but what they mean.

Trying to pull apart and unwind smaller and smaller parts of these recurrent shapes gave way, as I fell asleep, to the same kind of recursive unwinding, but of my own past.

I dreamed all night of scattered childhood memories. At one point, remembering a song – or perhaps just the act of singing – I was pierced with a flash of a long-forgotten feeling: that all is right with the world, that Mum and Dad are in charge, that I am safe.

It’s amazing how profoundly we lose that feeling.