• Vol. 09
  • Chapter 11
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In Dreams

In the stories our ancestors told,
the giant star leopard defended
her children from the evil volcanic
golem. In the stories our parents
told the kindly old man delivered
gifts and spread cheer if we were
a happy family. If our family was
unhappy, then the stories were much
more visceral and unkind, eat your
peas, or a man will come and steal
your teeth at night. Pick up your
toys or the man under the bed will
cut off your toes and wear them
as a necklace.

In the stories our friends told
babies were conceived in strange
and horrifying ways that made
no sense but scared all of the
children on the playground
even if they pretended to keep
a stiff upper lip.


In Dreams

Stories are told to make sense
of the uncomprehending
darkness that is our universe
Outside the campfire, noises
can be heard and we require
an explanation, even if the campfire
is now as big as the earth.

But as we look to the stars
Or to the bottom of the ocean
Or inside ourselves
At some point it must
be done, to put away our stories,
forget our childish games,
and accept our own
insignificance in the dark.