The Woven Sea

The rain is folding in waves against the windows. I close my eyes into moments of lull. In the intricate weaving of life, a flow emerges. Remain steady. Stand ready. I am swaying on cusps, seeing into futures, and I delight at the hope before me. This choice I have been given, to live a life of noticing the smallest things, is the most precious gem I hold. My gold is woven in possibilities and endless patterns of emerging change. Sunsets have no ends nor sunrise beginnings. It is an infinite timelessness merging days into slow minutes. Everything can change in an instant. Tides turn as I row with the ebb and flow. This sea is more vast than I can see. Endlessness is filled with rhythm and hope. I am home no matter where I roam because life is always surging. I was born with portals for DNA, and so I travel the waves through distance. This is my time.

Vennie Kocsis is the best-selling author of Cult Child and the hostess of Survivor Voices Show. She is an advocate, poet and artist.

Soul Theft

It happened early Tuesday morning. It has taken me this many days to verbalized it. Describing violent images is not an easy task. You see, the heart beats faster and faster. The head gets heavy. Hands shake. You close your eyes into short meditative moments, breathing and counting.

Inhale. 1. 2. 3. 4.

Exhale. 1. 2. 3. 4.

With each breath I center. This is not reality. This is violent imagery, seeping the emotions hiding inside my body’s cells.

The dream.

I am in the third perspective, observing. I have floated to the ceiling, and I am looking down upon the scene.

I am on a bed. I have on black pants and a white, short sleeve t-shirt. I am flat on my back. My arms are beside my body, which is completely straight. I cannot see my feet.
The bed is surrounded by people standing shoulder to shoulder. They are not moving. They are silently looking at me as if assessing their handiwork. They are gray forms. I cannot see them clearly. They look almost like carved out statues except for their left hands. Each one is holding a large knife in their hand. It is dripping with bright red blood.

From my unnoticed perch I’m the ceiling I am quizzically observing my own stomach and chest area. I feel no emotion as I look. It is hacked into so many pieces it mimics brutally tenderized meat. Blood is soaked into the white sheet all around me.

My gaze moves to my face. I believe I am still alive. My eyes are black. My facial expression looks peaceful. There is no scream to my mouth or contortion.

“How odd.” I think.

I awaken with a start, my muscles jerking, my heartbeat rapid, and I look at the clock. It is 7 am. I have chills in my skin. I curl beneath the covers, turn on a movie and make my mind try and forget. The images invade my day, drifting in and out. I know this will fade. I have been here so many times now, in the aftermath of violent night travel into the subconscious.

I bring out the emotion there. I hold it in my hands. It is the ghost wounds of countless stabs cast into the center of my spirit. I let it fade until I can be here now, scribing it without tears.
Digital Art ©VennieKocsis.com

The Tired Children

I am a child, maybe around eight or nine years of age.  I am in a large house with at least three stories and a basement.  I am in the basement with many other children.  We are moving large objects, too heavy for our small bodies to be moving on a consistent basis.  I can’t quite make out exactly what the objects are.  They are square, almost like blocks of concrete.

I am watching myself in third person, up against the ceiling looking down.  My hair is somewhat matted as though it has not been washed in quite a long time.  My face is dusty.  I have on burlap pants and a t-shirt that is stained. I cannot see my feet to know if there are shoes on or if I am barefoot.  I seem to have been down here for a very long time.  All of us children have.  I look tired, hopeless, worn, and moving methodically.  We do not talk to each other.  We do not look at each other. We move systematically, moving the large objects from a pile on one side of the basement to stack them neatly on the other side.  I feel the heaviness of whatever we all are moving and organizing.  I see the utter weariness in all our hunched over backs.

The dream scene changes. I am in my own body now.  I am an adult now.  I am sitting in a room with a large makeshift conference table.  It is handmade with slabs of wood.  There are many people around it in matching chairs made of tree trunks and tree limbs and nailed together pieces of board.  I cannot see their faces.  Only their forms.  They are a mixture of mirage and shadow, shifting between color and black and white.  I know I am being expelled from the house.  I feel that this is a regular occurrence, that once we children reach adulthood, we are no longer needed there.   I feel glad inside. I don’t understand why they aren’t worried that I and all the others they have released, will go to the authorities to tell on them.  I am aware that my life has been spent in the basement.  They are each talking to me, one at a time, as if giving instructions or even a farewell, but I am not listening.  I am in my own head, devising a plan to come back for the children in the basement.

I awake this morning, with a pinched nerve beneath the left shoulder blade on my back.  I let hot water pour onto it in the shower.  I understand the emotion that moved through me last night.  This reality of emotional pain is felt in multiple ways.  It moves through my heart strings and sometimes settles into my muscles.  It is not always mine.  At times, it feels like the pain of every hopeless child wishing as I did when I was little, that someday someone would save me.

©VennieKocsis.com

Why Did You Just Kill Me?

I am relaxing on a soft, off-white, leather couch. There is someone sitting on either side of me. My legs are stretched out in front of my body, and my head is resting comfortably on the back of the plush couch. I am laughing and talking with my present company as I watch the people around me.

This appears to be a party at someone’s house. There are a lot of people everywhere, standing in front of me, drinks in hand, throwing their heads back as they have joyous conversation.  

There is an attractive man directly in my gaze. My eyes zero in on him. He is wearing a baby blue, thin, cotton shirt, lazily untucked over washed out jeans. It is rolled at the cuffs up to his forearms and slightly unbuttoned at the chest. He reminds me of the ocean. He has a brilliant smile. His eyes even seem to gleam. I can’t break my gaze from his beautiful face. He is mesmerizing. He notices me looking at him and flashes a smile my way. I return it, and our eyes connect in a depth which makes the room temporarily fade away.

I turn my attention onto the person to my right. I cannot see anything about their body. They are a filmy grayish/silver figure, a mirage, not seen, but more felt by me. Their presence is there. I do not know our conversation’s topic. I know I feel happy inside of a rare moment of physical comfort in the midst of strangers.

Suddenly the man in the blue shirt walks swiftly towards me. He has a gun in his hand. He moves faster than I can blink. The gun is pressed against the bottom of my rib cage, and he is pulling the trigger over and over. As bullets enter my abdomen, my body bucks upwards. We have locked eyes, and he has the same sideways grin on his face. Except he isn’t beautiful to me anymore. He is sinister and cold, uncaring and damaging. Now I see pleasure in his eyes, pleasure which represents his love of hurting other people.

I feel disappointment in him. Why would he do such a disgusting and horrible thing? I had felt that he was one of the good ones.

“Why did you just kill me?” I ask him, but before I can hear his answer the dream fades to black.

I awaken with tears sliding down my cheeks. The clock tells me it’s shortly after three. My heart feels sad as I drift back to sleep. Yet, when I woke back up this morning, my spirit was filled with anger at how disappointing humans can all to frequently be.

Ants At the Symphony 

I am back in my high school town. Although there are no beaches in Martin, TN, I am perched, legs crossed, in front of one. This small beach boasts crystal clear, soft blue water rolling in with a slow, tender tide. I am sitting in an ancient stone colosseum. It is as if it was lifted from a fallen city and placed where it grandly sits now.

I am wearing an elegant black dress, shoulderless and simple. I glance down at my toes, perfectly painted deep blue and tucked inside of toeless, black heels. My hair is coifed and sprayed perfectly in place. I am grandly dressed for the symphony.

I am perched alone on one of the stone benches, closest to the stage which has been set up with the beautiful beach as scenery behind it. On stage is a large orchestra filled primarily with strings.

The music surrounds me. I close my eyes, feeling the soft embrace of the cello and the haunting tears of the violin strings.

Suddenly my right forearm begins to itch. I look down and see a red bump close to my wrist. It looks like I have been bitten by a mosquito. I scratch the bump, and when I do, the skin lifts and ants come scattering out of the hole in droves, covering my wrist and hand.

I panic.

I wake up.

It’s coming out.

The Open Mouth Contraption

I am watching myself in third perspective. I am feeling myself in first perspective. I am doing both of these things at the same time as I sleep lucidly dreaming.

I am prone on a metal table. My head is secured with something, maybe a strap. I can’t quite make it out. There is a metal contraption holding my mouth open. It has been open for hours, maybe days. My lips are three times their normal size. They are cracked and dry. My throat is screaming for water. I fade out.

Now I am wandering through a market. There are vendors everywhere selling fruits, vegetables and various wares. The market is packed with people. I feel conspicuous and paranoid that I will be recognized. By whom I do not know.

My hair is grossly disheveled. I can sense that I am confused as to my whereabouts. I cannot make out the ethnic or planetary  race of the people manning the market stands. They are shadowy and fading in and out. I don’t know if they are human or if I am in another country on earth. I feel taller than them.

I am unsure what planet I am on. My lips are so dry they are vastly blistered. I focus my view in on my mouth in order to assess the damage. They are horribly cracked, dry and swollen. I am cupping my hand over my mouth to shield them, not from embarrassment, but from being recognized. I feel that the condition of my lips will give away that I have escaped. From what I do not know.

Who have I run from? Who am I hiding from? What am I looking for in this market? Something to moisten my mouth and throat.

I wake up at three a.m. desperate with thirst. I stumble down the stairs and fill up a glass of water that I gulp and re-fill to gulp again. Cake. I am craving sugar. I shove pieces of it into into my mouth to curb the sudden craving. My lips are actually extremely dry. I slather them with Chapstick before falling back into sleep. I awaken into the day feeling the sadness of this world’s indifference, and I escape to the woods with moistener for my lips.

Did I travel? Am I remembering? Or is this just a dream? This life is confusing.

The Boy In The Wall

I am in the kitchen of a house. I am standing at the sink watching out of the window above it, enjoying observing some teenagers hanging out in the front yard; if dust and gravel can be considered a yard. There are two teen boys sitting in chairs talking together. A couple more are doing something at what appears to be a garden bed. Maybe they have built it and are continuing to work on their project.

Suddenly, vehicles are pulling up into the yard so quickly that dust begins to swirl like mini storms, causing the teens to start jumping out of the way. There are at least three SUV’s and another two to three black, four door sedans. They all have tinted windows. The inhabitants of the vehicles are getting out fast, as if they have a hostage situation on their hands or are about to enact a raid. They appear to be state officials, a mixture of FBI, Child Protective Services or similar institutions.

“What the hell is going on?” I think.

I turn to look behind me. A family lives in this house. It is not a fancy house. It is poor and as clean as a person can make a home with such shabby provisions. Even with the sparse accommodations, the appreciation and neatness given to this small residence shows that this house is loved.

I do not live here. I don’t know how I’ve come to be here or why. I am inside the house with a woman who is a stranger to me. She is the mother of these teenagers.

I look back out of the kitchen window. Time has turned into compartmentalizations as if the rest of the dream is frozen for a moment, and I stand watching a new scene that is progressing almost in slow motion.

There is a clothesline to the left of the dusty yard. it is set above lush and emerald green grass. Beautiful sheets in a vast array of differing colors are hanging from it, secured with equally colorful clothespins. There are rows and rows of them; purples, blues, reds and pastels of soft lemon and cotton candy shades.

A couple of the woman’s pre-teen daughters are laughing and dancing inside of the blowing sheets. The girls are unaware of the invasion in progress on the other side of the clotheslines. The many pieces of material keep softly moving in the breeze. For a moment I am mesmerized by the beauty of this colorful scene, the dancing girls and the sound of their free spirited giggling.

The panicked desperation of the mother’s voice snaps me back to reality and time begins to speed up again.

“They are here for my baby! Please, please hurry! Please, please help me!”

I don’t know what to do. I process quickly that these people have come here to take one of her children. Okay. Where is the child? I jump into action.

“Why do they want him?” I frantically ask her as I move towards the living room.

“I don’t know! I don’t know! But they are here for him!”

She is frozen in front of me, and her eyes hold the deepest fear I can imagine. She is small and frail with worn skin on her face; worn skin that comes from long hours of labor, suffering, sacrifice and a life of work. I am filled with compassion, absorbing her weariness and fright.

I see the child playing on the floor with an array of small little cars, toys and blocks. He is around four or five. He has dark hair, and he is built small for his age. He has on blue jeans, a light blue shirt and tennis shoes with Velcro closures. He is completely oblivious to what is going on around him right now. I rush over and softly take his hand.

“Hey! Come with me!” I sing in a happy voice. “We’re gonna play hide and seek!”

He takes my hand and jumps right up. I feel his elation at getting to play with me. I look down, and he is looking back at me with the sweetest smile. He doesn’t make a sound. I am enthralled by his presence. His energy consumes me. There is an acceptance exuding from this child that I have never felt in any human before. He is perfectly calm and unaware of the danger he is in. I sense that even if he was aware, he would still exist inside this ability of intensely calm acceptance. His eyes reflect more wisdom then I have ever witnessed in my life. He is pure love and knowledge.

The boy and I walk quickly to the back bedroom. The authorities are banging on the front door. The mother is biding time.

“I’m coming!” She calls loudly. “Hold on! I’m getting dressed!”

Her voice is shaking, and I know that I must move very swiftly now. Time is of crucial essence. This mother won’t be able to hold them off for long before they kick the door in.

I scan the bedroom for hiding places. There are none. The closet. No hidden compartments. There is just a mattress and box spring set on the floor. We are trapped in this room. My heart is thumping. I have to figure out how to hide this child.

My eyes come to rest on the back left corner where the walls meet. I see a patterning as if I can peel the paint off.

“Come!” I urge the little boy.

The authorities do not waste time. A boom indicates the door has just been crashed in. I can hear the mother screaming. I am racing as fast as I can. I pull the paint back from the corner of the walls. It comes right off, a thick layer of paint that stays in one large piece, almost as if it is a purposeful flap. I glance behind it and see the wooden framing of the house.

“Get in! Hurry!” I urge, helping the boy slip behind the paint flap.

He jumps right in and turns, standing straight between the wooden two by fours of the wall. His arms are relaxed by his sides. He is still silent, looking me directly in my eyes as if to say he is alright to stay in here for a while.

“Don’t make one sound until I let you out, okay?” I instruct firmly.

He continues to silently smile, and his eyes wordlessly tell me he understands everything. He understands all of life. This is why they want him.

They are coming down the hall. I hear their footsteps. Running. I throw the layer of paint back on the wall, pressing it into place as best I can. I am hoping the peeling paint will simply fit into the run down condition of the house.

As they open the bedroom door, I pick up a piece of clothing, pretending that I am merely cleaning up the room. I focus on my breathing as not to give away any knowledge of who they are. I look up and see a woman in a black suit, she has dark hair, parted in the middle and pulled straight back into a tight bun at the base of her head. Her features are so inconsequential to me I cannot describe her. She feels robotic, a clone of every female operative character ever portrayed in an espionage movie. I even expect her to have one of their accents. I suddenly fight an urge to laugh.

She is flanked from behind with authorities wearing black covert operation apparel; gun belts laden with multiple bullet filled clips, thick black pants tucked into boots and matching long sleeved under-armor shirts. Their bullet proof vests are their final layer, along with goggles and shrapnel helmets. I think how ridiculously extreme all of this force is, just to find a child, but I act startled when they come in, jumping back, dropping the shirt I’ve picked up back down to the floor, acting afraid as if I had no idea they were in the house.

My heart is thumping a bit, but I feel more calm and fearless than I had expected I would feel. I am thinking each step through. Do not give indication or look behind me, not even with my eyes. Give no clue that I know where the boy is.

I focus on my thoughts and stay silent.

“Don’t make a sound.” My mind urges him. Somehow I know he can telepathically hear me. “Don’t move an inch. Don’t cough.”

I do feel worry that they will discover him in the wall. I worry that this woman will ask what is behind that large paint patch in the corner, but I am able to focus completely on masking my worry.

“Where is he?” The woman demands.

“Who?” I ask innocently.

She says the boy’s name.

“Oh! I think he went to [so and so’s] house for a play date. What is wrong? Did you talk to his mother? Is he okay?” I feign worry as if I believe they are here to protect him.

The woman is looking at me intensely, and I know she doesn’t believe me. She is trying to read my mind. I feel amused by this. I sarcastically think ‘good luck, lady.’ I am ready for her questions.

“Who are you?” She demands.

“I’m here just helping doing some cleaning.” I cryptically reply not giving up my name.

I do not plan to answer any questions she might ask me next. Fuck her. I do not feel afraid of her. She thinks her mind is stronger than mine. She doesn’t realize that it is not. She does not know the depth of my abilities. I feel confident in myself. I feel protective worry for the child. I know without a doubt that I will fight, even die, to protect him.

My mind focuses back towards the pattern on the walls where the paint has been peeled. I block the woman’s existence in front of me as I focus.

“Do not let them see it.” My mind says. “They will not see it. There are no lines. The lines are invisible.”

The woman heads to the closet rummaging through piles of clothes. I stand still in my spot, compliant.

“I know he’s here somewhere. I know he is.” She is saying.

She surveys the room, and I stay standing quietly, wearing a perplexed look on my face as to reflect my confusion of why they’re here for the boy. She rummages through more of the clothes piles on the floor, poking at them with her heeled foot as if she will discover the boy under one of them.

“I know.” I say, sighing. “There is a LOT to fold in here”.

She is unamused by my attempt at distracting her with humor. Finally she realizes there is no place else in the room to look for him. She stares directly into my eyes. I gaze right back, blocking her attempt to dive into me.

“We will find him.” She firmly informs me.

I fight the urge to play with her. I fight my sarcasm. I am calm inside as I look directly back into her eyes feeling no fear or intimidation.

There is no smirk on my lips, no taunting expression. I too, feel an acceptance of what is and what my own abilities are. I am also aware of the soldiers. I will not be reckless, but even with them, I don’t fear their bullets or the supposed intimidating gear they’ve donned. They feel so insignificant and a waste of space in my current existence.

“Okay.” I agreeably reply to her. “If I see him, I’ll surely let you know.”

I have to get in at least one cryptic moment of sarcasm. We both know I will not tell her. We both know that playing the mind game with me doesn’t work. We have a moment of eye contact dueling, and I let my smile lines soften. I can gaze into her eyes all day. Of course she breaks away first. Naturally. All minions do. Even in her dedication to the dark forces she seemingly serves, she will always cower in the power existing in light. My confidence intimidates her.

They all turn, heading back down the hall to search the rest of the house. I pick up more clothes and continue folding in case they decide to turn around and come back in. I will wait until they leave the premises before we get the boy out of the wall. Then we will figure out what to do with him next.

As I am folding the clothes, I position my body slightly toward the wall. I see there are no paint lines. The wall is perfectly painted into one sheer dried layer.

Relief washes over my body that the paint lines and peeling edges really went invisible. I have a moment of musing how unfortunate it is that we’ll have to ruin the wall by using a sledgehammer to get the boy back out. That will make for some shitty cleanup. I chuckle to myself.

And so ends my dream.

The Three Black Hats

I am on an air mattress.  It is covered in a cotton sheet.  I am stretched out on my back beneath a soft fleece blanket. I am in the end room of a double wide trailer.  The trailer is nestled in a quiet neighborhood which is dense with trees.  There are no traffic sounds.  I am falling into sleep slowly.  

I may have passed time, into the REM and back out again because all I know is that I am lucidly awake.  I feel a prickling energy all over my body.  There is no pain.  It is electric.  Every hair on my skin is moving.  I can feel each folical.  There is a source pull.  It is coming from the large window on my left.  

I wanted to cover that window when I first arrived here, telling my nephew that it made me uncomfortable because it had only a sheer shell of a curtain. 

“Someone could stand out there and see me.”  I felt vulnerable. 

He assured me, attempting to comfort my cognition.

“It’s cool, Auntie.  No one around here will do that. Just don’t dance around nekkid.”
He did a hillbilly skip and we laughed, but I decided that this weekend I’m going to buy some thick curtains to cover this window. 

Now, on the same evening, I am here on this mattress feeling frozen with fear, having awakened in what seems to be the morning hours, two or three am.  I am wishing Inhad not waited.  I should have gone right then and bought curtains. 

 I know that I need to look at the window to be sure that I’m not just imagining things, but I am terrified to turn my head.  I am still, focused on my breathing.  I know someone is there.  I know it without a doubt.  Still, I have to see to be sure.  I finally move my head very, very slowly and just slightly enough to the left to give me an adequate view to see the window.  If there is someone there they shouldn’t be able to see through the darkness if I move slowly and just enough. 

Through the sheer of the curtains I see them.  Three men.  Side by side.  They are no more than five feet tall, each the exact same height.  They are dressed identical in dark suits and matching dark overcoats.  They have on button up shirts with maroon ties.  They wear black hats, like Hollisters, with maroon ribbons that match their ties.

Their hands are behind their backs.  I do not move. It crosses my mind that they may notice I am awake, but it seems insignificant.  They know already.  I slowly move my head back to the middle of the pillow. They are soulless.  They were not looking at me directly  but rather into the room as if awaiting orders from someone.  My heart is pounding rapidly, and I am dissociating.

I tell myself I am silly, but I am too terrified to glance again.  This will only confirm that I am not imagining all of this.  I am focused on going back to sleep.  I cannot be awake for what is going to happen next. 

“Go back to sleep.”  I urge myself. 

“Go back to sleep.” I say it over and over. 

I close my eyes. I think that I must go back to sleep so that I won’t feel what they are going to do to me.  I make myself laugh inside my head.  What a silly notion.  This shit’s not real.  Yet, beneath my attempts to convince myself, I know they have the ability to take one step and walk through that wall.  Then there will be no escaping.  They’ll be in the house.  

I tell myself that is also a ridiculous notion.  Because they’re reading my thoughts and know all of my plans.  So the best I can do for myself is to go back to sleep and get through it.  So I drift back down into the chasm of REM.

In the morning I will wonder if my memory was real or if it was really a dream.  I will wonder still. 

(Dreamt in 2010, Olympia, Wa)

The Caning

I am in a bedroom trying to go to sleep.  I cannot go to sleep because in a room down the hall, children are wailing and screaming.   They are being beaten.  I can hear them.  I leap from my bed and run down the hallway towards the room.  I fling open the door.

There, with her hand raised high, is my mother, a long, thick cane in her hand.  There must be fifty children in the room, some having already been beaten, others, waiting their turn, shaking in a huddle, unable to escape what is to come.

She has a child by the arm, and she is striking the child’s legs over and over as the child screams.  I see the child’s face, mouth open, sobbing and screaming.  The children who have already been beaten are in a group together. Some are laying down in the fetal position, so obviously in shock.  Others are rocking back and forth, weeping and holding their wounds. The skin on their legs are splayed open.  I can see meat and flesh, bright black and purple bruises forming.  I scream at my mother as I grab the child from her arm.

STOP! JUST STOP IT!”  I am screaming. “WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS? WHY?

Her eyes are menacing.  She is looking at me with anger.  I feel no fear of her.  I will kill her if I have to.  I will not let her strike another child.   I am herding the children into one group, and as they see that I am there to save them, they begin to gather behind me.  We are all on one side of the room, and I am assessing getting them all out of the door, down the hall, into my room where I can lock the door until I figure out the next step to saving them.   My mother is on the opposite side of the room right by the door, the cane in her right hand. She is methodically tapping it on the palm of her left hand.  She has a wicked smirk across her face as if I am so silly to think that I can fight against her.  But I am ready.  I will fight her with all of my power, and in my mind, I will win.

She begins to advance towards me.  I stand strong in front of the children.  My fists are clenched.  I am planning.  I will go for her throat.  I will grab the cane from her hand and strike her on her head and neck, everywhere I can until she is beaten bloody and raw like the legs of these children.

But as she gets closer towards me, she becomes bigger and bigger, and I become as small as the children.  Suddenly, I am filled with terror, realizing, that I will not be able to fight her.  I am too little.  In my mind, I am an adult.  I am thinking as an adult.  In my view I when I entered the room, I was the same size as her, but now, I am no longer a grown up.  I am just an adult inside of the body of a little girl, and I know that I am next.  She is going to beat me harder than she has beaten any of the other children.   My throat is closing as I try and suck in my breath.

Her face is the most terrifying of all.  Her eyes are flat, black and soulless.  Her mouth is twisted into a crooked grin representing that she is enjoying inflicting this abuse, and that she will revel in beating me.   She is so close now, and I am no taller than her knees.  I am just a little girl with the rest of the children, and my body is shaking, shivering with anxiety and terror.

and the dream ends.

(featured image from Jill Greenberg’s “Crying Children”)

The Night Stabbing

Stabbing

Night terrors.  They always come to me in the waking hours as I move from REM to lucid.  They are like earthquakes that hit in the night, leaving the day shaken up.  This one brought a sadness that sat inside a lump in my throat all day.

The dream:

There I am walking down a hallway toward a public restroom.  It feels like I may be in a mall.  The hallway is shaped like an L, with the smaller part being the entrance, then the hallway, with first the men’s door to the left, then the woman’s door at the end.

There is a man walking down the hallway behind me. I can see him, even though I have not turned my head.  He appears quite a distance and average in size.  I assume he is heading to the men’s bathroom, and I think nothing of it.  I continue walking toward the woman’s bathroom door.

As I begin to enter the women’s restroom, I turn to see that he has walked past the entrance of the men’s restroom and is swiftly coming directly toward me.  My eye immediately sees that the man has a 12 inch hunting knife in his right hand.

I panic, flying into the bathroom and slamming the door as hard as I can so he can’t get in.  I push the full weight of my body against the door. I am trying to gain leverage, but my tennis shoes are slipping on the tile floor. I can hear the sounds of someone inside another stall.

I am pushing so hard against the door I have no strength to cry out, and I am quickly no match for him.  He is at least six foot four, two hundred and eighty pounds of solid man. I am lucky to hold the door against him for thirty seconds before he plows over me, ripping the door right off the hinges.  In the process, I am slammed to the floor between the bathroom stalls.

I scramble to get up, but he holds his hand over my mouth, pushing my head against the floor. He  immediately begins to stab me in an upwards motion beneath my breast plate.  He is stabbing me so quick and so deep I cannot even count them.

I also cannot feel a thing.  Because he has me flat on my back, all my eyes can view is his hand swiftly moving in and out as he stabs me in the chest over and over.

There is no pain. I know that I am dying, but I feel nothing. I see no blood flying.  There isn’t even any on the knife. It leaves my body shining, clean silver, and I am left saddened because of its size.  I am completely aware that I am dying right now.  There is no way I am taking this many stabs with this large of a knife and living.

I use my left hand to pry his fingers from over my mouth.

“Please stop stabbing me!” I begin to beg him.

He has no emotion.  There is nothing.  He is flat and hollow.  He doesn’t even hear me or glance toward my face.  He just smashes his hand down harder on my mouth continuing to stab me.  It seems there must be hundreds; so many that I don’t understand why I am not dead yet.  To him I am not a person.  He feels predatory.  Completely void of soul or reason.  I am merely another woman slain.  When he has had enough of me or I die, whichever comes first, he will move on to another girl.

Suddenly the other person opens the bathroom stall door. He immediately ceases the stabbing as he has been unaware there was anyone else in the bathroom. I don’t understand why she has not heard this whole time what was going on.  His hand is still over my mouth as he looks up towards her. I think, no, don’t kill her.  Please.  But I know she’s next.  He is done with me. I am already dead.  She is next. I lay dying, and then I wake up.

Night terrors leave me with the full emotion of the scene.  I woke up grieving my own death today; feeling a loss, physically exhausted.  I had to write this out so I could give it away and go sleep.  Coupled with the emotion, it takes time for images to fade, but even so, I shan’t let emotion make me fear the Dreamscape.

The Kidnapped Baby

I am at a house. Rocco is here with my sister.  They seem to be a couple.  There is some kind of reunion happening somewhere in another state, and we are all preparing to fly there. I have been put in charge of transporting another couple’s small baby to that city.  I seemed to have agreed to this, and I am participating willingly in the plans.

There is a luggage set packed and ready to go. The larger piece has all of my belongings in it, and the smaller one is for the baby. It is filled with diapers and formula, clothes and bottles. I will carry the smaller one on the plane with me so that I have the things I need to care for the baby.

Now we are at the airport, and I am at the ticket counter with the baby in the stroller. The baby might be six or seven months old, very tiny, strapped into the small, easy to fold up stroller.  It is a boy with very little hair, fair skin and blue eyes. The ticket counter people sit very high above me so I have to strain my neck back to look up towards them. Suddenly I realize two things have gone horribly wrong. One. I left my purse in the backseat of Rocco’s car, so I do not have my identification to get my ticket and check in for the flight. Problem two makes me panic harder. They have accidentally checked the smaller suitcase, and I now have no formula, clothers, diapers or anything to care for the baby during the trip. I begin to cry and panic, not knowing what to do first. I feel confused because I am always organized and on top of things.  How could all of this have gone wrong?

I glance at the clock. I only have an hour. I see that we are close to the gate we need to go to. I don’t like being late.  An airline attendant comes around from the side of the counter. She has a sweet smile, kind eyes, dark curly hair that reaches her shoulders and is dressed like the rest of the workers in khaki pants and a dark blue polo shirt with the airline insignia on it. It is wings, like the wings they give out to kids when they fly by themselves.

I’ll tell you what.” She says sweetly to me. “I’ll watch the baby while you run get the check in bag and call your friends to bring your purse. Meanwhile we will hold the flight until you return so you won’t miss it.

Seriously?” I exclaim, overwhelmed by this kindness. “You would do that for me? Thank YOU!”

I breathe a sigh of relief. The baby will be safe. I will be able to handle business more quickly, and we’ll be on our way. I head down the walkway.

I am back at the ticket counter now. I have retrieved the smaller bag from the check in, but realize that I have no way to call Rocco because my phone is in my purse which I have left in the car. Shit, what will I do now?  I’ll have to catch a cab and run over to Rocco’s for my purse.  I wonder if they’ll still watch the baby and hold the flight while I do this? I look around to the side of the counter.

But the woman who is caring for the baby is gone. I look around at the seating thinking she might have just gone somewhere to relax, but she is not there.  The more I look, the more I realize that the baby has been kidnapped. She was not an airline attendant nor was the uniform she was wearing authentic.  She had stolen it and put it on, purposely tracking me to steal the baby.  I freak out and immediately get everyone involved. Suddenly there are police and airline workers gathered around me. They have locked down all of the airport exits and put out an immediate alert for the baby.

But I know it is too late. My intuition tells me that the woman is gone from the airport with the baby. She had plenty of time to get out while I was gone.  Fuck.  What the hell was I thinking to trust her?  I mean, she had on the same uniform as the rest of the employees, so why wouldn’t I trust her?  My eye notices a magazine stand.  I instinctively grab a newspaper knowing it will give me a clue of where the woman has taken the baby. I flip directly to the wanted ads.

There its is, an ad that says:

Open Heart Church

Bring your children to our wonderful Sunday school!

They will play and get good meals while mom and dad relax.

The advertisement goes on to list the address, inviting families to freely attend their open house sessions and stop in any time. I am filled with sickness inside.  I see everything they are doing, killing parents, taking children, controlling people inside of the building, and I know immediately that this is where the baby is. They are taking children. They are spending time plotting, stalking and kidnapping children by luring in families with happy go lucky advertisements.  I explain everything that I see and know to the police.

This place right here. This is where the baby is.” I point to the advertisement.

They look at me skeptically asking me how I know. I cannot explain to them how I know. I have no facts to back me up.

I just know. I am telling you! The baby is there.”  I say it matter of fact and firmly. “Please, just believe me.  Just go check there. Please just check.”

I am begging for them to not rule out the possibility because I know if they just go, they will find the baby without a doubt.  I believe they will find more children there also.

Now I am suddenly back at Rocco’s to grab my purse. I feel there is a police car that has taken me there, pulled up in the driveway behind Rocco’s car.  Rocco and my sister have come outside of the house.  I hurriedly tell them the baby is missing and a brief summary of what happened. My purse is in the back seat of Rocco’s car. He has left the windows down, and a flash flood of rain has made everything in the car soaking wet. Including my purse. I grab it and realize that because it is leather, everything inside of it is dry. I am elated that my identification, cards and other belongings inside the purse are safe.  I sling it over my body knowing that the leather will dry over the next few hours.

Now I am suddenly in front of a street in an average subdivision. There is a huge sprawling house in front of me with a makeshift sign on plywood that has the name of the church on it.  It is the church from the newspaper advertisement.  Police are everywhere around me. They are asking me am I sure the baby is inside. I assure them that I know the baby is in there. We stand together, as they strategically discuss how to enter the home undetected.

Panic is filling my chest. What if the kidnappers kill the baby? What if they hide the baby since the house is so large it appears to have many rooms? What if they escape with the baby? How am I going to tell the parents that I have lost their precious infant? I am filled with despair, worry and sadness for the situation. Everything that could have gone wrong did go wrong, and I will have to be the one to explain it.

Now I am suddenly standing inside the front door of the home where the baby and his parents live. There is a hallway directly to my right.  There is a piece of paper upon which there is a note written from Rocco and my sister. It has fallen, face down on the floor of the hallway. I realize that the parents did not even see it or read it because it fell when they walked in the house.

It says “Angie took the baby on with her so you two don’t have to worry about it. See you there!

I look into the living room. There is a love seat. I can sense there is a woman sitting on it to my left, but I can’t quite see her because the doorway into the living room doesn’t allow my eyesight to see that far in. All I see is the man sitting directly in front of me on the other end of the love seat. He is talking to the woman.

I am dumbfounded.

It’s O.J. Simpson. But he is old, quite old. What the hell is O.J. Simpson doing here, I am thinking to myself. I am questioning if it is really him.  Yet, I know, that’s fucking O.J. Simpson.  I am standing there thinking “this is the most bizarre shit that I’ve ever experienced.” He is talking to the woman and has not noticed me yet.

I’m not all of those things that they say I am.” He is saying gently to her. “I am really not a bad person inside of myself. I’m a good man. A lot of that is lies.”

Then he leans towards her as if he is going to kiss her, and she seemingly must have pulled back because then he says,

Oh, so you don’t want to kiss me, huh?”

I sense his mood change to irritation, and I wake up.