Bad Dream

I stumbled on a flock of geese this evening
basking in the sun just beyond
a browning stand of evergreens
and it’s cruel insects

The fowl were soaking in the last
and reddest stretch of daylight
and they did not speak or crow
or flap or quack as they soaked.
They soaked and nothing more.

I had not disturbed them
so I watched very quietly
and did not move to lift my hunting rifle.
I scratched away an insect
and I hummed a bit
and the beautiful birds kept soaking
while the sun kept sinking
But as it went, so the stretches of daylight
got redder and redder
until everything finally and suddenly
went black.

There were no stars in
what I assumed must be the sky,
and I could not make out even the faintest
silhouette of my found flock, and when
I turned, I found my stand of trees
had blackened instead of browned.
It worried me, and I began to run.

I left my hunting rifle somewhere in that glade
and my hat flew away as a breeze picked up
and my heart was pounding as my lungs
pumped furiously to keep me whole
and soon, I was overtaken by a thick,
unyielding dread.

It sat in my chest as a 3-year old
thinking he was winning a wrestling match
might sit. It crushed in deep and I,
without thinking, shattered myself
as I raced away.

I was lost for eternity, I’m sure,
as I stumbled through the clawing woods
and strangling sounds of the wild.
Soon I could not breathe.
Shortly after, I could no longer run.
Finally I failed to stand and then,
like the end of every nightmare,
the dark and foul overtook me.


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