The Ballad of the Nightmare Kid
I’ll split you in two. -Freddy Krueger
The other night, deep in the dark, way after the bats had flown out of the holes in the eaves and the deer in the woods out across the crick were thigh-deep in the frightening solitude of their own strange paranoid peace, I must have been nightmare-ing again.
Arle laughed about it the next morning. It made me smile to be hit with her joy so early. But it also made me a little uneasy, I guess. I mean, no one wants to be known as the Night Screamer. But that’s who I am, if we’re being honest. I scream my way through certain midnight flights across the celestial planes of the alternative living that I do up in my head/ when I’m asleep/ but maybe not really.
You know what I mean?
Why do I have reoccurring nightmares? Some I recall, loosely/ vaguely: like the over and over-ness of the shadowy figure standing by my bedside in the dark. I see nothing of him, only sense him opening the ‘locked door’ (Arle forgot to lock it/ wtf?!) and then he is by my side. Breathing silent noise into the air conditioner wheeze. It is as if he has been traveling for thousands of years to this place, towards this moment, and my horror/ as it wells up into my chest and into my throat/ it emerges as a kind of muted scream. An incapacitated cry for him to get the fuck out of here or else that is as genuine as anything I have ever uttered: and yet: it sounds like a goat giving birth.