Future in the Fire

I woke up this morning feeling closer to death than I did last night.

Out of all the sentences I have ever written, the one above seems the most alive.

A glance at my bookshelves confirms that this room hasn’t changed since I went to bed last night. All of the books, softcovers and hardcovers, will be here after my final breath.

“How many more years will we have together?” I ask the books aloud.

An inner voice responds: “I’m right here in front of you! Focus on me!” My eyes return to the desk, to my dream journal. I don’t have to open it to know that last night’s dream has been recorded inside.

When did I write it down? None of the dream’s images come to mind. Moments later, with a new sentence, they do.

A plant is on fire in front of me. Maybe it’s a single leaf. Fear makes my own motion an image for another dream. Motionless, I marvel at the growing flames.

There’s no caffeine in my system yet, and I can’t remember the last time I felt so alive. The following sentence comes to me as if it were a figure emerging from the darkness: My future is in the fire.

 

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