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Are We Dreaming? (circa March 1990)

Once upon a time … Wow! That’s original.  Let’s try again, okay?  Long, long ago … Go ahead.  Say it.  I just have no imagination, right?  Right.  Then I’ll just get straight to the point.  It was a time when … (no wisecracks, please) … anyway, it was a time when space creatures were thought of but never talked about; when money was used but never earned; when love was present but never real.  Now, if that’s not as plain as peanut butter, I’m sorry, but read on anyway.

Here’s how this story goes:  She, don’t ask me who she is.  I’m sure you can figure out by the pronoun that this person is of the female persuasion.  If not, I think this is a little too deep for you.  Now, don’t sidetrack me anymore, okay?  Good.  She admired a man.  He was an extremely well-known man and didn’t even know she existed, or so she thought.  She favored him so much that she went so far as to dream about him.

Some of her dreams were really outstanding, or so I’ve heard.  She had many discussions with her friends about these dreams.  In each one, he would confess (ooh, that’s a good word) his love to her.  The only bad part of these fantasies was that she couldn’t bring herself to admit loving him also.  Oh, yes, she told him many times that she enjoyed his company, but who wants to hear that when they could be hearing those three words:  “I … ”  Well, you know what I’m talking about.  She used to shove these bad thoughts into the back of her mind.

“It’s only a dream,” she’d  say, “it’s not for real.”

Well, one night she had a dream unlike any other.  Oh sure, she went over the basic facts of the other dreams, but there was something different about this one.  She was having a conversation with a friend (no, that’s not the weird part).  In a totally different place still visible to her as an image, he was having the same conversation at the same time with a friend.  Now, this talk wasn’t usual.  They were speaking about how they wished the dreams would end.

“Not knowing what they mean is the annoying part,” they both said.  From this she, as an outsider looking in on both conversations, gathered that he was having the same dreams.  The friend asked her, “Haven’t you told him you love him?” “How can I say that when I’ve never really met him?” was her curious reply.

“I think you have,” the friend said.  “Admit it, and it won’t be a dream anymore.  It’ll be real.”  Next, she heard her friend and his friend say together, “It won’t be a dream anymore.  It’ll be real.”  Then the friends weren’t there anymore.  She and he were alone.  He asked, “Don’t you want’ me?”  She showed no emotion with her reply.  “It’s impossible.  I don’t even know you.”

Suddenly, he was being pulled away from her by an invisible force.  Still, there was so feeling presented in her face.  Then she heard both the friends’ voices say, “Admit it and it won’t be a dream anymore.  It’ll be real.”  These words pounded in her head.

She began to run toward him, screaming his name (no, I’m not going to tell you what it is).  He turned and began his journey toward her.  Just as they were in arm’s length of each other, they reached for the other’s hand.  Instead, they discovered some type of invisible shield between them.  As his hands slid down the glass (we’ll just call it that), he said, “It’ll never be real.  It’s over.”  While he repeated this over and over, he became faint to her.

Suddenly, she yelled with all her might, “I love you!” He raised his head.  He had heard her slightly.  “What did you say?” he asked and he lined his hands up with hers on the shield.

She answered weakly, “I’m always gonna love you.” He repeated these words to her.  The next thing they knew, the shield had disappeared and their hands fell together in a grasp.  Then they heard two voices say, “It won’t be a dream anymore.” She looked into his eyes and they both said, “It’ll be real.”

The next day she stayed home.  It gave her time to think.  The only thing that kept coming back to her was this:  If life happens but is never real, then there’s no reality.  If there’s no reality, then there’s no such thing as a dream.  Are we real or are we a dream?  How do we know which is which.

Then the answer was there like someone flipped a switch.  We don’t know which is which.  We happen each day and each night.  We’re so busy trying to find reality that we miss out on life.  It’s been said that you haven’t lived until you’ve loved.  So could that possibly mean that love makes life real?

See Steph’s Writing.

Published inEarly Writing

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