The Holy Dream Projector

What is this horrific creation that haunts my palate? Last night I, strapped into the holy dream projector, came to realize a dream so utterly base and untempting that I cannot hope to forget it.

Heavens above, what drove me to design that ludicrous contraption? The engraved crucifix still hangs in ready position, and the blankets which adorn the chair are ruffled in testament to my unction.

Last night I tucked myself in to sleep, pulling across the flaxen sleep straps, crushing a twig with the pestle and licking the bitter crumbs. Electric lights blinked on and off in time to my tiring eyes. The projector is half divine and half magic, smiling euphoria and ambrosia mist. It takes one's wish and tells it again, tells it until one believes it. Twinkle of an eye, twiddle of a finger, wrinkle of the nose, and you are swept away to tomorrow, flapping your arms and gliding through the night.

I dreamt of eating fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Sinner though it made me feel, I bit into another, and another. The juice, sweet and dark, dripped from my chin into my upheld hands. It tickled my skin and I awoke.

Electric lights buzzed in the stale air. The clock read twelve past two.

I took up the pestle, but saw that there was no need; my tongue burned as it ran over the acrid bits which remained. They stung then numbed my throat. I tightened the straps and waited for sleep to return. Perhaps hours passed; the dull, restless lights buzzed beyond my eyelids; I was asleep.

A dream had passed in the ticking hours of deathly whiteness. My tireless mind alive and inspired. Senses tingling with documentable ecstasy. With what pure bonds was I held in wonder; with what vertiginous pleasure did I credit the fraud. The awakening came with vicious cruelty.

My arms were sticky with dried juice and sweat. I sat up straight, gasping and straining to break free from the chair. Eyes, bloodshot and sore, guided frantic fingers through the ritual of removal. Clamps snicked, buttons snapped, body crumpled weak and tortured to the floor. Rain pattered against the window. Walls closed around me and darkness fell.

On a calm Sunday morning I leave that place behind. The machine I have dismantled as best I can; the crucifix remains, indelible icon, restrained from its holy function by my will alone. Lest I forget a vision my eyes once had, the sweet scent lingers.

Copyright (c) 2000