Contempt wears many faces | A Dream, Part 1
Last week, two days after the December 2 San Bernardino attack, I had a vivid dream. I’ve been puzzling over it for several days. In the meantime, public rhetoric and political talk about what to do and not do about terrorism dominates the air waves. As do reminders of the anguish of victims living and dead.
A circus atmosphere has invaded our air space.
We can’t wait to see the next act,
even though it disgusts us.
Then there’s that endless wave of finger-pointing.
Gun sales soar.
Macho bully talk and quick-fix solutions escalate.
As does silence born of fear.
Are my vocal chords paralyzed? If not, what am I to say or do? Am I hunkering down, hoping to become anonymous and not draw attention to myself? All this and more informs the way I’m thinking about my dream.
Here’s the entire dream, from my dream journal, verbatim:
I’m in an impoverished setting. A visitor, not a resident. The small sitting room has old furniture (straight-back chairs) and a very small TV sitting on a cluttered table. There’s an old plant—not very healthy—with stems drooping in front of the TV screen.
This seems to be a home for children and young women. A few are in the room with me. I’m not sure who’s in charge. I decide to tune the TV to a clear station and clear away the stems so we can see what’s on the screen. I invite the young girls (up to age 14?) to watch with me. We pull up chairs and begin watching whatever is on TV. (I can’t remember what it was.)
In a few minutes, other girls come in bringing chairs with them. I see an opportunity to connect with them. I’m not sure how it will happen, but I see they’re eager for positive attention, camaraderie, and perhaps information. About what? I’m not sure yet.
I look behind me (I’m on the end of the front row) and see that the room is now crowded. The young girls and women seem to like talking and being together. The TV reception isn’t good, but it seems to be a drawing-point for connecting these young women with each other. What might we all enjoy watching and discussing? I don’t know.
In the next scene I’m out on the street, standing on a sidewalk next to what looks like a beer joint. Two adult men walk up to the beer joint. Each has a young adult woman hooked onto a heavy metal chain—as though they were dogs. I recognize the two young women. They were in the small room. They’re dressed well. One even seems to be dressed up in ‘Sunday’ clothes.
The men have just ‘captured’ them. One is crying out, struggling against the chain on her arm. The man hooks her chain to a pole outside the beer joint and tells her that if she’s gone when he returns (from drinking?), he’ll kill her. The second man also secures his chain and goes in with his buddy.
The young woman on the second chain throws herself down onto the pavement, face down and in a fetal position, facing into a corner just outside the entrance to the beer joint. Her knees are drawn up beneath her on the pavement, and she’s sobbing in despair. She has on a beautiful black and white print dress.
I’m wondering what to do.
My alarm bell rings.
To be continued….
© Elouise Renich Fraser, 9 December 2015
Image from Wikimedia commons; photo credit: Adrian Michael