Posts Tagged ‘dreams


Dentures, Drugs, and Dreams, Mark 2


I said there were two massively weird dreams screwing up the sleep schedule last time. Here’s the other.

I’m at the window, staring down into the parking lot. A cab pulls up. One of the old school, yellow checker style ones. Someone steps out; hard to make out anything about them other than it’s male, tall and gangly.

He’s wearing a tan beret and a beige overcoat. I see him tilt his head up and glance at the window I’m watching him from while he rummages in his pocket to pay the cabbie. Somehow I know he’s staring at me, and that he’s come for me.

I back away, feeling like someone just reached into my chest and squeezed my heart. I hear footsteps on the stairs outside the apartment and I know the tread. The weight behind them, the pace; I know who’s coming up the stairs, and I react with no surprise but plenty of pants-wetting fear when the doorbell rings. My legs are rubber, my mouth dry, but I can’t stop myself. I go to the door and open it.

It’s him. Of course it is. I should have known when I saw the cab, or the beret. It can’t be him, it’s impossible – he’s been dead for a decade – but it is anyway.

My grandfather is standing in my doorway, though death has been kinder to him than living has been to me. His hair is thick and black instead of thin and steel grey; his eyes are a sharp and piercing, unclouded by glaucoma or retinal surgery or ridiculously thick bifocals. The lines in his face have mostly smoothed out, except the deep creases of frown lines to either side of his jaw, the ones that always made me think of a ventriloquist’s dummy.

He looks like he must have a long time ago when he and my grandmother first met. I remember seeing a picture of him like this, back when I was a kid. Probably why I’ve dressed him this way – the beret gives it away. It used to hang in the hallway of grandma’s house, a relic of him when he might have still known how to smile or take a joke.

But he’s not smiling now. He shoves me back and marches into the house, slamming the door with a sound like a vault or a tomb locking. In the way dreams do, there is no clear divide or sense of order to things, now. Only that he’s yelling at me, and he’s furious.

So am I.

His complaint seems to be that I didn’t buy a Christmas tree for him. I have no idea what relation that has to anything. But he says, repeatedly, that he can’t believe I couldn’t even chip in $8 (the specific amount is also odd to me) for the holidays. The berating continues, but there’s no sense to it. Either I don’t remember what the other complaints were or there weren’t any other specifics and it’s just one of those dream moments where you know things are/have happening/happened but you couldn’t say how you know it.

I’m getting angrier and angrier, and finally, I start shouting at him. I call him a southern-fried son of a bitch. I tell him that it isn’t fair he blames his failures, fear, and procrastination on his family, no matter how fucked up they might have been. I tell him to get the fuck out of my house and go be dead somewhere else.

He sits down in a chair, and I realize the apartment isn’t the layout I live in, now. It’s been changed to grandma’s house and we’re in the kitchen – his kitchen – while he’s taken residence in a half-busted rocking chair that was always in the corner somewhere in the house. He smiles at me, though there is no love, happiness, or actual mirth in it. His teeth are shockingly white and obviously real, not the poor plastic things he wore for the last few decades of his life.

“Make it a threat, maybe I will.” His voice isn’t young again, I realize. It’s still the voice of a 60-year smoker with every drop of venom I remember from my childhood in it.

“Get out,” I tell him. He starts pawing at the air in front of him with his left hand, snorting. He’s doing a bull impression.

“Threaten me,” he tells me again. “Go ahead and do it you little snot-nosed bastard.”

“Get the fuck out of my house, you Kentucky Fried, ignorant, stupid, useless, worthless, gutless old fuck or I’ll…”

I’ll what? I don’t know. I know the dream paused there like it was giving me a chance to come up with something really good. But all the threats I could think of sounded pathetic, the whinging of some little millennial gothling tripping on their own angsty agony and talking about what they were going to do to their bullies. His grin kept getting wider, and I kept getting angrier, and the angrier I got the more stupid and juvenile the potential threats became.

I think I came up with a good one. I don’t remember what it was. I was about to tell him so – and probably be murdered by him for uttering it, assuming the insults I hurled beforehand didn’t push him over the edge – but then I woke up.

Fun stuff, right? At least I’m done with the pain meds, now. Hopefully this cuts the dreams back to my usual recurring nightmares and insomnia. I’m getting pretty sick of this shit.

Until next time.

KA Spiral no signature


Dentures, Drugs, and Dreams

I’ve been away for a bit, as I’m sure some of you have noticed. It wasn’t intentional by any means. I was doing so well, too; managed to write every day for almost two months straight.

But life happens, as everyone is aware. First it looked like the pneumonia might be coming back; then there was the possibility it was mono. But the real culprit to being deathly ill for nearly a month?

Severe infection in the jaw. Guess what the cure was?

Well, if you said “yank all your top teeth out,” you win a prize. I don’t know what that prize is, yet, but I’m sure I’ll think of something. I have access to the teeth… I suppose I could give you some of those, if you wanted… but only if you promise not to use them as DNA evidence to frame me for something or cast any voodoo on me. On second thought, maybe not. Might be kinda gross.

So, due to that, I haven’t really been able to eat or talk for almost a month. The pain medication they gave me also makes it almost impossible to focus and screws up my sleep – to say nothing of the near-constant nausea – so I don’t get much of interest done. It also tends to mess with my dreams, so I’ll just share a couple of those for now. Maybe someone else can decode them or will find them of interest.

In the first, for some reason I’m trying to convince a motivational speaker to come and give a lecture to teenagers at a church. The church is First Christian Church, one I was familiar with back in Carson City, though in the dream it has been abandoned and shuttered. I technically don’t have rights to use it or access to it, but for some reason it’s very important that I convince this person that I do.

I get there, and have no problem getting in, though the vestibule is filled with broken appliances. My guest speaker doesn’t seem to mind, merely asking questions about the congregation and how soon the building will be ready. I give him vague answers and wander further in.

The inside of the church turns out to be an ultra posh casino, and the priest’s quarters are like a penthouse apartment. The owner is, for some reason, the “Earl and Vicar of Brunswick.” Yeah, I dunno what that’s about, either. He’s old, and in the way you know things in dreams, I know he has a son, and they had a falling out. The falling out was because the Earl/Vicar and his son were playing a bit of wife swapping that didn’t end well.

That wasn’t the only swapping going on, though; they were also swapping faces, peeling them off and slapping on whatever they wanted. He wanted to bequeath the church/casino/penthouse to me for some reason. Again, in the way you know things, I knew this wasn’t actually the Vicar, but his son; they’d swapped and the actual Vicar was off galavanting with that youthful visage. Not sure why that would work – in the dream it seemed like they were just switching faces, but it seemed like that also made them immortal for some reason – and this fake Vicar wanted to will everything to me then swap with my face and take it all back. Despite knowing that, I still agreed.

That’s where the dream ended. I have no idea what it means.

I know I said there were two, but this has gone on for a bit and I’m not feeling so hot. I’ll share the other in a bit.

Until next time.


Dream Journal


This is more for my own personal log than anything else… but some of you out there might have some input or find an image in there that’s worth mining. If so, more power to you, and may it do ya fine as Stephen King’s Roland might say.

I remember two moons. One black moon that radiated white light, one white moon that cast black light. I don’t know what that even means, only that it was terribly important that it worked that way. Both lights would make you sick if you got too much of them; the black light made your skin slough off – and in the painful, radiation sickness sort of way, not like a snake where it’s just part of the daily routine sort of way – while the white light would rot your brain, make your eyes bleed.

Problem was, both conditions were incurable and deadly, but you also needed the lights. Without a proper amount of either, you’d just wither and die. Everyone needed different amounts of both, and there was no real indicator of when you’ve had too much until the sickness got you.

Was, all in all, not a good situation. Though the dream didn’t feel like a nightmare. More like a documentary, if that makes any sense. Just a statement of “this is how things work.”

There may be a story idea in it one day. Not for right now; I have enough on my plate with Believe Me and “Riptide.” But at least I can come back here and look at it if I need a memory jog.

Until next time.

KA Spiral no signature


Maiax: Truth in Dreams

“Life is but a dream.” What if that’s true? What if we’re all just the dreams of something else, the quivering nightmares and ecstasies of something else – that may not even be human or human-like by our understanding – that tosses fitfully in its sleep?

Further, what if those dreamers are merely the dreams of something else? And they something else further yet, on and on until one reaches the source, who may have conjured the whole of time as we understand it in one lazy afternoon nap, merely by passing through dozens or hundreds of proxies?

What of our own dreams? Are they “alive” in this way, too? What of the dreams within dreams, and so on? When does it end?


What happens when a dreamer awakens? Some might argue, if this were the case, that’s what death is; the consensual reality made when the dreamers one tier above us wake up. But what if that’s not the case? What if death is just another part of the dream – or nightmare – and none of us have been exposed to the awakening of a dreamer, yet? Or, if we have, we were completely unaware of it?

After all, what happens when you wake up? Most of the time an incredibly vivid dream is tatterdemalion rags by the time you make it to the bathroom, pour your first cup of coffee or light that first cigarette; a handful of lingering images or feelings by the time the Pop-Tart comes out of the toaster, and forgotten entirely by lunchtime. If the dreamers above us wake, what if those people who are their dreams merely… vanish? No trace, no indication of what happened… potentially not even a memory of it?

Maiax is shaping up to be the next serial piece I work on, once “Layers” is finished. It may be pushed back a bit, if I decide instead to work on “Riptide” or Ex Inferis, but it’s coming. We’ll see how it works out.

KA Spiral no signature



“Write what you know,” the sages say. I try. Not always successfully.

“Layers” marches towards its’ end (and there will be another morsel tomorrow, my pretties, likely the penultimate one) and as it does I wonder what else I will scribble. There are ideas, of course, and Believe Me to work on, but there are other stories, dreams that have not been shared, thoughts that go unheeded.

I worry, you see.

I worry that someone who might read them will judge me for them. Will take them wrong and be hurt by the things that the brain conjures when all the filters come off. That someone will believe it references them when it’s a jumble of experiences and thoughts plastered together from a lifetime of experiences.

Our dreams aren’t exactly autobiographical; the writings inspired by them even less so. But others sometimes think they are.

What of you folks out there? Is there something you would write, paint or create that you don’t set down because you fear the repercussions or recriminations of those who might think they see themselves or the things they’ve done in between the words or brush strokes or notes?

Drop it down below. Anonymously, if you like. Get it out of the system. If you want to write a post about it and link it down there, that’s an option, too.

It’s a new year, and while that’s all about new things, sometimes it means disposing of the old things if only so there’s a clean room to fill up.

“Layers” has been the start of that, for me. There will probably be more. What about you?

KA Spiral no signature


Dreams and Nightmares

Since the last go-round of “spin the medication,” I’ve found myself dreaming a lot more. Or perhaps not necessarily dreaming more, but able to remember more of them. This is pleasant in some ways – there’s always an image worth mining hiding somewhere in the subconscious, after all – but fairly unpleasant in others – my penchant for recurring nightmares appears to have made a comeback.

They’re nothing new. I wouldn’t even classify them as anything special. They’ve just always been there – or at least as long as I remember, anyway – and serve only as reminders that there are some nights I am just not going to get any sleep.

But this one… it’s weird. One, it involves a place I’ve actually been; my other recurring nightmares are obviously somewhere far away from my usual stomping grounds. For two, I get an advance warning it’s coming before it decides to descend on me like an unwilling lover in the depths of night.

It doesn’t seem like much. Just a brief flash of an image in my mind as I’m getting ready for bed. In that image, it’s pitch black, but somehow I can still see clearly. There are clouds roiling overhead, the feeling of lightning in the air. It’s a school play yard, with a tetherball pole anchored to a tire, the ball hanging limp.

Doesn’t seem so bad, does it? I agree. But when I see that brief flash, I hunker down and put up the mental walls, because I know it’s coming.

In the dream itself, I’m back on that playground, standing in the middle of the asphalt, facing St. Teresa’s Catholic School. Here’s a – very rough – map; forgive my lack of drawing skills:

schoolyard map

I’m pretty much in the middle, there, in front of the K-3 building. The three “x”s are the spots I end up going to, though what order I visit them in seems random and changes each time the dream comes. But still, each time the result is the same.

I approach the object – the tetherball pole, a set of log posts arrayed like chairs, or the makeshift pitcher’s mound on the baseball field – the urge to scream rising in my throat. I know something terrible is coming, some Mythos diety-like horror that is more than I can stand, and going to those places will bring it… but I can’t stop myself.

At each place, I stand and stare at the clouds above, which are forming a whirlpool. Then something like lightning jumps from the object in question and through that hole in the clouds. I try to scream, but can’t; I can’t draw in a breath and the only thing that comes out when I try to expel what air I do manage to take in comes out sounding like a broken teakettle.

It doesn’t stop me. I go to the next spot, and the next, the same thing happening. Then I go back to the middle of the playground, turning to face the building itself. Sometimes I can see in the windows, sometimes not; when the rooms are lit and I can see inside, there are rows of dolls in the seats, all staring at me. I can’t tell if they’re actual dolls or dead children, or just so still they look like they might be inanimate or dead. Then I look up.

The clouds have all gathered in that spot, creating a whirlpool above; the other three are gone, absorbed into this one. The lightning jumps out of my eyes and mouth towards that hole. There’s pain and terror, but why I can’t say.

Then I wake up. Usually flailing for the aspirator or bolting for the bathroom.

I’ve had this dream off and on since I was a child. Different interpretations abound. Anyone out there a dream interpreter, want to give their impressions?

What about the rest of you? Have a dream that terrifies you, with or without reason, that you want to get off your chest? Drop it down below, or a link to your own post if you like. Maybe if we spread it around, it’ll lose some of the hold it has over us.

Pleasant dreams.

KA Spiral no signature

Show your support

Adopt an Artist

Take pity, and eternal gratitude will be yours; helps keep this site running and the words flowing.

PayPal Donate Button


Follow Insomniac Nightmares on