Although I’ve now received the second vaccine dose, I’m still having “pandemic dreams” during restless nights. Here’s an attempt to explore one of last night’s dreams, the one toward waking that I most remember.
After Covid Vaccination
Able to go further now than my former daily
rides to count roadside deer, I find restrictions
still in place. I must continue to wear a mask
in stores, socially distance, wash hands often.
Maybe these frustrations caused last night’s
strange dream—an explosion blasting fire
and dark smoke into the sky, and then the
aftermath—the big deer-field's grass scorched
on the diagonal, no deer to be seen. Or maybe
this dream was born from too much daily news—
an endless chain of catastrophes across the
planet, political toxins spewing.
Waking this morning, I wonder about the deer,
hope they escaped into the woods undamaged
and whole. And I wonder why I sparked that
explosion and fire—what I was blowing up.
At least I didn’t blacken the whole field, left
some free for grazing. And I didn’t demolish
or burn down the house of the woman whose
field it may have been as she yelled from her
porch to move the car, repeatedly flashing a
blinding spotlight into my eyes, warning me
not to slow down, pull over, and stop to enjoy
the peace of the herd, although my anger may
have tindered my fire. After three days of rain
it will clear later today, winds rising as a cold
front races across the state. May tonight’s dream
be of a field of stars and a benevolent moon that
only mirrors fire. May the herd find other fields
unharmed by flame or flood, and may I join
them, becoming deer, free to safely wander as
we graze the newly greening grasses of spring.
© 2021 Penny Harter