Nightmare (small stone#3)

 

Nightmare (small stone#3)

I wake, skin prickling with pinpoints of sweat, heart hammering and my breath coming in ragged gulps. I peel back the covers, let the heat out, and immediately cold night air sends me shivering back under the duvet. I focus on my breathing first, slowing it enough to stop the panic that is threatening to take me over. I close my eyes again, letting the dream play back, examining it closely, trying to understand what might have been real and what the product of stress and fear. Slowly, I let go and drift back into an uneasy sleep, still vigilant against the return of nightmares, waiting for morning light to send them scurrying back into the dark hole of my subconscious.

The Moth’s Kiss- a short story

 

The Moth’s Kiss

 

You never noticed me. Your kind seldom do; I’m almost invisible, faded to a uniform shade of grey of soul and of face. But I noticed you, sitting there with a net book open, writing, in the corner of that café. Lost to the surrounding bustle, you looked completely absorbed in your task, a tiny frown of concentration making a line between your eyebrows. That’ll become permanent, you know, if you don’t get rid of that little habit.

I digress.

I don’t know why it was you and not someone else who caught my attention that day. There are plenty of beautiful people around, flitting like bright butterflies from stall to stall and in and out of the shops as though they were nectar-rich flowers. But you had no interest in that. Perhaps that was why I noticed you: your stillness amid the frantic consumer frenzy. It was like catching the fragrance of a real living rose in a concrete jungle.

So I watched. You let your coffee go cold while you typed, and then drank it in one draught and looked puzzled by the fact that it was cold. I liked that. You lost all sense of time and space while you were concentrating and for me, that’s immensely promising. You could say it’s essential for my needs.

After I decided that you were the one, it was easy to take a quick peep over your shoulder and read your email address. Other information was just as easy to steal. You are really quite naïve, you know. You should really remember to log out. It makes it too easy for someone like me to get in and read your emails. I guess you don’t think anyone would be interested and you’d be very wrong indeed; you don’t know the stir you cause among my kind. Be glad it’s me and not someone else.

The first night I watched you sleeping it felt like a huge step, a massive victory, but it paled and became commonplace. Night after night, watching and never being able to do more than that. I became almost bored. A slight movement and I became alert again, excited, and a tiny bit scared that I might be discovered. It’s silly as there’s no way you might guess. I said I’m pretty much invisible; I didn’t exaggerate. You sleep deeply and by the time you wake, I’m long gone and I leave no trace. At least, no trace you can find without very special training.

But the other night it was different. What happened that day? Rejection? Heart break? You didn’t mention it in any email; maybe it hurt too much whatever it was. You went to bed and tossed and turned for hours, and then when you finally fell asleep, you wept. I saw. Tears glistening in the finger of light that slips through where the curtains don’t meet, one after another, slipping silently out of tightly shut eyes. I heard you sob and it made me tense but you were crying in your sleep.

I read once about a moth that draws all its fluid and nutrient needs by stealing the tears of sleepers. I don’t know if this is a myth or a true creature but it appealed to me. Your tears were delicious; I could almost taste their salt. I wanted to lean over your sleeping face and slowly kiss them away and enjoy your pain.

But a web-cam has its limits and there’s no way I can touch you.

Yet.

Dream Torment

Dream Torment

 

Sleep, sleep; dive deep:

The Sea of undiscovered dreams appears.

Sleep, sleep; dig deep:

The underworld of hopes and fears.

Is it real or is it not?

Can I reach it? Better not!

Twists and turns; tunnels long.

A voice beyond: a siren’s song.

Eyes are heavy; legs are weak,

Can I find the thing I seek?

Waking now, it fades away.

Forget it in the light of day.

At sleep-fall it comes again,

Lures me in, lets go and then,

Moves beyond where I can go,

I cannot run; I am too slow.

Dreams torment me, draw me deep:

I get no rest in nightly sleep.

The Corpse Dream, again

I’ve had a variation on this dream off and on for a very long time but it hardly ever pops up these days. I actually thought until last night I’d not have it again. The basic premise is this: I have somehow killed someone and concealed the body. I never have the faintest idea who and I don’t see this body, but I know it’s there, all wrapped up or rolled up in a carpet or buried  or otherwise hidden. Usually the hiding places are woefully inadequate and my panic through the dream is that it will be discovered and I’ll be in trouble beyond imagining. I also often consider re-hiding the corpse somewhere more effective.

This morning, somewhere after about 4.30am, I dreamed I was about to be found out. I was going to where I knew I’d hidden this body(again unknown identity) with some others. In this case, it was at a garage-type lock-up storage unit and in the dream I knew I had simply left it wrapped up in black plastic and gaffer tape, lying in the open in the middle of the floor. The others( I’m not entirely sure who they were or why they were there) unlocked the door and went inside while I waited outside, waiting for the screams and shouts of alarm and horror. I knew it had been quite a while and the stench would be appalling and after afew seconds, people came out again, complaining of the terrible smell. There was nothing there that was otherwise horrifying; the body had vanished.

I had a sense of disappointment in the dream as I had felt a sense of relief at the whole thing being finally being discovered and the waiting for disaster to be over at last. I also had no idea where the body had gone or who had moved it; I had no sense that I had done it.

The dream then shifted to a butcher’s shop we used to know in the midlands. It was a proper old fashioned butcher’s that made their own sausages and mince and pies and so on and I’m trying to work the mincing machine. I am feeding a series of bones through the mincer but they’re coming out in chunks and not mincing at all. I’ve got rib bones at hand and suddenly one of the assistants comes in and is surprised to find me there out of hours. She adjusts the machine for me and I am able to mince very small all the bones I have waiting. I have no sense of what animal(or indeed person) the bones belong to but I do have a sense of guilt and deceit at being there.

I woke feeling somewhat distressed by both dreams(or the two segments of dream) and am still at a loss to understand them. For the record, I am certain I have never(intentionally or otherwise) killed anyone and hidden the body. Within this latest dream (and with the others too) I have always had a sense of having done it accidentally and then felt obliged to hide what I’d done, where in real life, I am pretty sure I’d own up instantly.

I’ve often felt hopelessly inadequate for most things my life has thrown at me, feeling as if I am performing a longterm con act and am surviving on pure luck not to have been found out and unmasked as a fraud or a show off who can’t really come up with the goods. Even my teaching is subject to this feeling, that I’m busking the whole time and can’t really do it at all.   

So who or what is this body I have spent so many years trying in my dreams to hide and why do I do it?

A night of soap bubbles

I didn’t go to bed last night until after midnight and I slept quite soon after that.

I woke with nightmares somewhere after three; I think I got too hot or it might have been the cheese on toast I had for supper. It’s a nightmare that crops up from time to time, where something evil and unearthly has somehow inflitrated my home and I am required to perform an exorcism. I remember reciting the Lord’s Prayer and demanding that the thing (under my bed at this point) leave at once. I might even have directed it to move into the light but I can’t be sure. One curious thing for those of you who interpret dreams (I am talking to you, Robert) the dream was set not only in my parents’ house, but in the bedroom I had as a child but not a teenager. It wasn’t exactly as I remember it; the drab wallpaper was there but the double bed that inhabits the room today was there instead of the single bed of my childhood. I woke up partially during the dream and took better control; the monster(which I never saw) had been reluctant to obey me, but when I became lucid within the dream, I found the atmosphere of dread and terror dissipated and I work feeling OK. Usually after such a dream I wake in a cold sweat and turn the light on for a while; I often also reach for some item of religious comfort, or my husband (who could be said to be that too, given his calling)

I went back to sleep and dreamed assorted dreams that have left me with fragments of bubbles, solidified slightly to shards of very fine and sparkly glass. I’ve been playing with them since I woke, rearranging them to make pretty or interesting patterns.

It feels rather good. I feel like a child with a new Fuzzy Felts set, one with glitter and satin as well as the usual bright and not-so-bright colours, to play around with and make new pictures. None of them are permanent because, if you ever had Fuzzy Felts, the joy of them was being able to change the pictures at will to tell a new story.

The really  funny thing is that even though I didn’t go to sleep till almost 1am, I woke at about 8am, feeling ready for the day. Even when I got to bed at 9pm and sleep till 6.45 I wake often as if I have tossed and turned all night. Obviously this needs more thought; recent research suggests that sharing a bed is not actually good for sleep, but I do suspect that NOT sharing one is likely to be bad for marriages. I don’t yet know if it was the skewing of my sleep pattern that has effected this change, or if it’s a mere one-off, or whether as is equally likely, that I am just relaxing from stopping my work schedule, or because I slept alone.

More research needed. I suppose I could always go and sleep in a tent in the garden to see what effect that has….