I went to the doctor the very next day
to see what kind of words he'd say
he said it was bad dream.
'I wouldn't worry about it none though,
Them old dreams are only in your head'
I love dreaming but I hate dreams. By which, of course, I really mean I love my own dreams but hate listening to other people's dreams. Anne often tells me hers. I tune out within a sentence. It's my dead-zone equivalent to her disregard for my poetry. Excepting, of course, my humble words have been wrestled from the sweat of a fevered existential brow and turned into beauty and truth whilst she just went to sleep and thought of stabby long things entering warm moist rooms and nonsuch. Or something.
It's like the scene in When Harry Met Sally (above):
Sally: Well, basically it's the same dream I've been having since I was twelve.
Harry: Which is?
Sally: Okay, there's this guy...
Harry: What does he look like?
Sally: I don't know, he's just sort of faceless.
Harry: Faceless guy, okay.
Sally: He RIPS off my clothes.
Sally: That's it.
Harry: That's it? Some faceless guy rips off all your clothes, and THAT'S the sex fantasy you've been having since you were twelve?
Sally: Well sometimes I vary it a little.
Harry: Which part?
Sally: What I'm wearing.
Still, I had a dream last night of such screamingness I'm actually scared to go to sleep tonight. What it's about I'll leave to others. Obviously it's a conflation of things I've had on my mind - Syria, The Walking Dead and badger-culling, for starters. I'm just grateful I hadn't watched David Attenborough's The Hunt.
And obviously I apologise for sharing it.
I came to a field near town. There was a new low fence around it. Inside was a flock of sheep, huge badger setts, polar bears and a tiger. I asked someone who I couldn't see what was happening. He said that the tiger and polar bears were going to work together to kill the badgers, though he didn't specify how. They needed the sheep for food in the meantime, and as he said this I saw a polar bear swipe a sheep down. The sheep lay on its back spatch-cocked like a chicken. I said but they're going to get out. That fence is hopeless. I'm scared. We can't stand here. But he insisted everything would be all right. That this was what had to be done. The right thing to do. And then I said, ok, even if the fences hold, and they won't, but even so, what if people go into the field – then they will all be killed. But the man said no – there were signs up, it was perfectly safe.
I pointed to a gate on the other side of the field. What about there I said, anyone could come over there. We need to stop people getting into the field. We need to stop animals getting out of the field. Too late, he laughed. I looked up above me and in the trees was a family of badgers, trying and failing to escape a tiger, who had climbed up after them and was knocking them all down as though he was picking coconuts. They fell at my feet and all around me. Suddenly a polar bear came up behind me until I was cowering under his front legs, in the valley of the shadow of death. I screamed and screamed the silent screams of those condemned by sleep to be unable to move. But actually he was protecting me from the tiger. The polar bear stood over me for ages. Like a good guy. Like a samartian. I awoke with a snort and a gulp and shudder. And then he ate me.