Aphelion Issue 239, Volume 23
May 2019
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My Dreams and Me

by Don Dussault

I'm walking in an endless hallway with doors on either side. All the doors are closed. They are varnished panelled doors without names or numbers on them. My legs feel tired as I awaken.

The dream tells me what, after nineteen years I'm at a career dead-end?

Another morning. I awaken from a dream of brooding violence. I'm in a warehouse with an overweight endomorphic stranger. Outside, his angry overweight endomorphic twin is trying to break in. We're nailing boards across the door and windows.

Who are these guys? Is my health under siege, an infection threatening my immune system? I may be reaching for an explanation where there isn't one. I write down this dream among others in a notebook I keep at my bedside.

An attractive woman of around twenty is at my door. She has a warm seductive smile for me. She says she's noticed me before. I wonder why an aging guy like me when she could have anyone she wants? I invite her in. She says she's not available now, how about tomorrow morning at 10:30? I need to check my calendar.

I have a 10:30 appointment I can't afford to miss.

I wake up regretful, puzzled. She represents something important, perhaps life or death, but which one? Or does the appointment itself represent oncoming death? Such are my thoughts at fifty-seven.

Browsing in my notebook, I seek patterns in my scribbles. My dream record reveals nothing special. Never mind. Enjoy my retirement. Tomorrow start planning that fishing trip. I turn off the lamp and settle in to sleep.

I'm on a train rising high in the Swiss mountains, along the edges of steep cliffs. Weak-kneed about heights, I refuse to look out my window.

Across the aisle sits a woman in her thirties. Through her window loom white mountain peaks. Her smile reassures me. Accept the journey, her smile says.

An uneasy memory of this dream lingers. Firmly plunking down my rubber-tipped aluminum cane at each stride, now and then leaning on it a little, I shuffle down an empty suburban sidewalk beside rectangles of shaven green lawn.

Darkness breaks with a chill, a burst of light. I stumble. Unaccustomed to these legs. Try. Yes, run. A rush of smells. Many times taller than I, it stands on two legs, looking down at me. Its mouth makes noises.

Something round on the floor. In it something smells tasty. I lap at it with my tongue. My tail is wagging. I am not dreaming.

2019 Don Dussault

Don Dussault lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. His history includes an MA in English literature and postgrad study in linguistics. He's placed prose and poetry in several literary publications. So far he's excerpted four stories on his website under construction, https://dondussault.net/.

Find more by Don Dussault in the Author Index.

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