Through a Dream, Darkly

Aanteekwa felt something whirring
inside her pocket: she jammed a
sweat-slicked hand inside and
extracted her compass.
Peering at the gold-ticked dial,

she watched as the needle pointed
to a shadow in the fabric of the
opposite corner. The dark sliver
ripped open, and a melancholy wail
emerged from its light lorn center.

D.S., is that you? Aanteekwa
called out, standing near a
ragged, blood-rippled edge.

First, there was only stillness:
a frozen fluid ocean, absolute zero.
Then a sea of sobs carried one syllable
adrift to their ears. Yes, he replied.
Yes, it’s me. He sniffled. I’m okay.

Not as long as you’re in that hole,
the musician retorted. Why don’t
you come out of there?
D.S. replied:
I am a creation of dreams.
I seek my creator, and the place

where his mind cleaved open the portal
through which I entered space and time.
But why here?
Aanteekwa asked.
I thought I might find him in here,
D.S. said. The incense of this place

called me, untangled my heart stuffed
with motley prayers and intoxicating
wishes. When I didn’t find him in the room,
I sought him inside this fabric.

No one noticed Babyface scamper
to the disembodied heart still beating
in the ivory chair and yank the hoses
out of its chambers. Just as it hissed
to a wrinkled death of silence

someone shouted: Who disconnected
that heart!
Everyone turned and saw
an older, leather-dipped duplicate of D.S. He
glared at them, rigid eyes of olive steel, and
said softly: you have just killed this place.
We must leave soon, or we will all die.

Written 1/6 and 1/7/13
© 2014 Nicole Nicholson. All rights reserved.

This poem was written for the very first We Wordle prompt over at We Write Poems. I used several of the words: compass, shadow, fabric, melancholy, edge, stillness, fluid, creation, dreams, portal, incense, motley, prayers, intoxicating, wishes, and wrinkled. I started with the phrase “creation of dreams” and went from them, letting the story dictate which ones I used. This is a continuation from the last poem, “Chamber of Horrors“.


About ravenswingpoetry

I am a 38 year old writer from Columbus, OH and the creator of Raven's Wing Poetry. I am a poet, seeker, fellow traveler, and autistic.
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5 Responses to Through a Dream, Darkly

  1. Irene says:

    Amazing. The words carried your story along, Nicole.

  2. julespaige says:

    I have backtracked through to the beginning and think – there has got to be more.
    ‘Please, may I have more?… you mix story telling with verse, teasing us with snippets and we sigh when we read the last (so far, last) words.

    I had fun with this prompt too. Wishing for you and yours a wonderful New Year!

  3. 1sojournal says:

    Love the mixture of mystery and magic. Well woven and no pun intended. The fabric of a life, wrapped around several others.


  4. Pingback: An Empire of Dirt | Raven's Wing Poetry

  5. Hello all, and thank you for the comments. I’m glad you’re enjoying this saga…I’m not sure if it’s poetry, flash fiction, or a bit of both. I’m stretching my wings a bit, and I feel almost compelled to keep writing this story — so I promise you, Jules, there will be many more episodes.

    Irene: I’ve sometimes learned to think a little left-of-center with the prompts to help craft the story, but the wordles allow me the most freedom. I’m excited to see what comes next.

    I’ve borrowed quite a few things from the real world to drop into this story, as well as from fiction and music. You could say that this story is one of my ways to try to touch the faces of people whose artistry I admire a great deal, and maybe trying to understand them. So Elizabeth, you are definitely right about “the fabric of a life, wrapped around several others”.


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