Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Maybe God is trying to tell me something.

Dream: My new job was working stock at a major department store. I had long hair like in my early twenties. Right off the bat I could tell that my fellow employees already had it in for me. We worked at night with only one spot light in the enormous stockroom. A stockroom that resembled interconnected trash strewn alleys in any major city. They worked me tirelessly but I kept up throughout the ear
ly morning. When the doors of the store opened it was our cue to leave.
The store lobby was more than a welcomed sight. The crowds came from miles to see it whether it was Christmas or not. The doors opened to raised walk-ways overlooking the striking white trunks of quaking aspen. Above was at least three more stories of the tops of the trees. No matter what season it was, the leaves glimmered silver, yellow, and gold. In the center of the lobby was an enormous wrought iron winding stair case. Fifty years of the artist's life was devoted to its creation and no one disputed that. The staircase resembled the surrounding aspen in every way. Each leaf was unique. Not a single branch was repeated. To top it off all of the offices were concealed within the tree top. The only highlight of my new job was that occasionally I had to ascend the staircase to hand deliver a package or two. I tried my best to befriend the office staff, in the hopes that I would be blessed to work among such beauty. They promised that I would be given a position once one opened but it never came to fruition.
Each morning as I left I struggled to admire the view while pushing through the awe distracted crowd.
Once outside I was always shocked to see that the location of the department store was dismal. Outside, the store was surrounded by depressing dilapidated buildings. Even the daylight couldn't survive here. The homeless lined the walkways begging for any handout. They were like a plague, infecting you with their hopelessness. I had discovered, along with fellow commuters, that the safest way out of the city was to make our way through the abandoned buildings. The path was something of an obstacle course, weaving its way this way and that. The final exit was a climb over and out of a window on top of an old rusty rotating doorway. Each day we were greeted by a homeless man named Ricard ("No 'O,' " as he liked to remind us). He resembled former Philadelphia mayor, John Street. His skin was cold and gray from living underground. He would help us down in exchange for a "small donation. "
As the months went by he grew more erratic . Other homeless men tried to take advantage of his position but he fought them off with increasing violence. One day, as he was helping me down, he was attacked. I jumped in, trying to separate them, but suddenly the assailant sliced at Ricard's abdomen with a small knife. Thankfully Ricard's layers of clothing prevented any serious damage but he still needed care. I volunteered to take him to a hospital but he refused. After he helped everyone down I followed him to a first aid center to make sure he arrived safely. Ricard was never seen again.
Each work night was a struggle. The shadows in the warehouse from the spotlight kept distracting me. I felt that there was something inside of them, trying to communicate with me. One night, as we finally finished up, I was breaking down the cardboard shipping boxes. The pile grew higher and higher until it toppled over, scattering the cardboard flat on the floor. As I reached to clean it up I saw a shadow on the wall. What I saw threw me to the floor. Looming above me stood Christ on the cross. I could hear him scream in what I assume was Aramaic. Slowly, other shadows appeared, weeping beside him. As I turned to see who was casting the shadow, the spotlight became blindingly bright. I called out but as quickly as I was blinded, the light went completely dark.
I woke up in a cold sweat.

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