January 28, 2022

Grazed knees

A recurring dream is a particular dream that is experienced by a person multiple times over the course of their life. This dream is always the same. The same setting, the same characters, and it is derived from the same emotion. Some of the common ones include: being chased, finding yourself in a public place dressed in only your underwear, and losing all of your teeth. They say that a recurring dream is actually good. It points to a particular behavior that is unhealthy for you. I, on the other hand, have a recurring premonition.

I’m standing in a crowded place, most of the time it’s an airport terminal. I’m standing there waiting for someone. I watch all the people pass by and I get lost in thought. I feel at ease, as if I’m drifting down a stream without a care in the world. I’m content. But, then I hear my name being called. I snap back to the scene in front of me and my body tenses. I realize that the voice is no longer familiar to me, but I am being called by my pet name. My head swivels around as I try to place where the sound is coming from. Maybe it’s all in my head, I think to myself. But no, there it is again. And then, someone taps my shoulder. I turn around, and I feel the vice tightening around my heart. The pilot light is ignited and my body burns with an old flame. Like a ghost, she’s standing there in front of me. It’s been an eternity since I’ve talked to her, let alone seen her.

I just stand there. She leans in to hug me and I just stand there. She smiles awkwardly as I ask her how she is. We don’t need words to connect. We’re beyond that. We go through the polite pleasantries, mentally ticking them off our list. She tells me that she’s still single, trying to focus on work and so on. Life doesn’t have a spark anymore. She tells me this as someone brushes against my back and, unconsciously, my right hand moves over to cover my left one. I start to play with my wedding ring. I’m nervous. She looks down at my hands and notices the ring. I see the change of emotion in her eyes. I shouldn’t feel anything, but I do. I know that she can sense what I’m feeling. Her body shifts defensively, and our meeting starts to come to a close. She is faced with an obstacle that she cannot overcome. A white tissue is waved as a surrendering farewell.

My wife walks up to me, and I introduce her to an old ‘friend’. Excuses are produced and we walk our separate ways. For a while, nothing will be the same. Maybe nothing will be the same ever again. Thoughts run through our heads. What happened and what didn’t happen. She thinks about the numerous chances she should have taken, as I think about the chances I could have given her. I reason that I didn’t have all the time in the world. She reasons that I waited for her, when she shouldn’t have kept me waiting. There’s no equation, only an outcome. One that is not favorable for any of us. I discreetly look over my shoulder, as she looks over hers. Our eyes meet and the setting sun glints in the salty tear that clings to her cheek, as I once clung to her.

I do not wake up in a cold sweat, thankful that it was just a dream. I cannot. No. Emotions hit me and knock me to the ground. I stand up and carry on with life. I carry on with this thought in my head as I live with a bruised heart and grazed knees.

2 Comments on Grazed knees

  1. I love your use of short sentences because it really builds great tension. Your writing style is the type I like to read. I enjoyed it. A very curious piece.

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