It creeps through the crawly cracks of 3AM. That weird dimension. There are thoughts that can only hatch in the human skull at 3AM. It is always 3AM somewhere. It is happening right now. [SWL, Filth]

There are several good forms of 3am.

There’s the 3am where you’re getting home, tired but still riding the joy of a good night out with friends new and old. Where the last taxi, or the last night bus, has dropped you off and now you just need to walk a short distance to where home is, where bed is, so your brain can turn your day into memories.

There’s the 3am when you’re still bathed in LED monitor-glow, be it from a game that didn’t let you go, a story that needs to be told, or a coding project that’s just about working. As you surface from the depths of whatever zone you’ve submerged yourself in, you realise that you are still going to need sleep.

There’s the 3am that starts a holiday, where the taxi to the airport will be here in an hour and you’ve just got to shower and dress, put your house in order so that the future post-holiday version of you will come home not hating you. Check the windows, check the gas, and leave everything for a couple of weeks.

There are 3am conversations, where the shine of a new relationship – friend or more – is slowly sanded down to reveal the dreams and hopes you share or oppose, where the last glasses of wine stand a third remaining, forgotten as the conversation goes deeper.

And then there’s the 3am dream, from which you wake immediately and full of adrenaline at a threat half remembered, but deep embedded. That has stirred the back darkness of your mind, and now the tide of worries and bad memories return.

This isn’t the good kind of 3am.