Wednesday, July 6, 2011


….I don’t believe in dreams.
I don’t understand why we have them, why some people always remember them and some don’t.
A lot of folks like to brag about their dreams. Authors use dreams to tell you things about their story because they can’t conjure up another scenario that would facilitate the telling of their deeper themes. They use dreams as if they’re prostitutes.
The whole idea of dreaming pretty much baffles me. Sleep does, too. Imagine aliens landing at night and entering houses and finding all of us laying on mattresses like pod people with the lights out and the shades pulled.
That’s kind of freaky, if you think about it. We’re weirder than aliens.
And dreams are strange phenomenon. Who invented them? What was the grand plan there?
Are they in color? Do dogs really only dream in black and white?
Yeah, so I don’t cotton to dreams.
I do believe in nightmares, though.
Nightmares are a different story altogether.
Nightmares show up out of the blue, like melanoma or a grade school bully, like bad memories you can’t do anything about, like sun spots and old age.
I hate the realistic-type nightmares where you wake up panting in the middle of the night, probably sweaty, and you blink your eyes open and then you feel relieved and grateful that the nightmare is just that—a horrific fiction of the mind—but then when you go back to sleep, you somehow slip right back into the very scary escapade you were anxiously trying to avoid.
The nightmare keeps sucking you in, down.
That fiend is still chasing you.
Yep. He’s got a sharp knife with a long blade that gleams at you like lake front silver every time you turn over your shoulder.
And why are you running so slow? You’re in pretty good shape. Just yesterday you ripped off five miles and now, here in your hot head, you are sluggish and sort of shuffling, yes, it’s not even running this thing you’re doing, and look at that spooky guy with the butcher knife behind you, he’s making up ground, he’s cruising and salivating, slobbering. Are his feet even touching the ground? Are those even feet? Maybe they’re hooves. Oh, hell.
And while time is compressing and distance contracting, you wonder if what people say about dreams is true--that you can’t die in your own dreams. You remember that people have told you other things that turned out to be false claims, old wives tales—you can go blind from masturbating, touching toads will give you warts, the meek shall inherit the earth, you’re a lot younger than you look, the sun’ll come out tomorrow.
You don’t want to be a cynic. You’re a hopeful person. But this is a dream-nightmare-midnight terror and you’re not sure if you’re sure that this is really just some mental fantasy, a black mental fantasy, because if it is real, there’s no way in the world you’d have picked this horror romp to delve into. You’d have picked beaches and sunshine, puppies, a bathtub full of Sprees, you’d pick the warm curl of your sleeping partner.
And then it happens, breaking apart your anxiety, your sleeping partner turning in the night, her skin hot indeed, her breath bouncing off your back, hands on your shoulder, fingering the bony parts, her lips touching a patch, whispering, “I love you,” letting you know what is really real and what is not.

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