Bad dreams can't hurt you. No matter how real they seem you always wake up. Sometimes quickly with a start, sweating and panting in the middle of the night.
Sometimes slowly, your eyes unfocus from the eyelid movie and come back to the world around you. The terror of the dream fades into a dull ache, fading away into the mist of memory.
In my worst dream, there were white plates, silver and cups ringed with baby blue lines, gleaming in the midday sun. Rainbows of flowers swayed gently at tables clothed in gold.
The cool breeze carried the lazy large clouds lingering in the glistening blue sky, rippling the water in the lake.
The exuberance reverberated off the curved wooden pavilion with voices accented from all corners of the earth. The door opened.
She stepped through the door carrying her own localized wind. A head full of flowers draping down her neck, skin reflecting the sun's rays, wrapped in white.
Her smile pushed out from her glistening teeth to the corners of her lips and spread up to her eyes. The music swelled to her entrance and the gathered party hailed her with applause.
The moment reminded me of the first time I turned the corner and walked through the doorway and saw her. Wearing blue overalls with a white shirt, she was sitting in the sun focusing on a book.
The air swirled softly around her and I approached.
"Um excuse me --"
She looked up and slowly focused her eyes on me as I stumbled my way through the first spark, a stranger to her universe, a rogue comet meant to pass by but got trapped by her gravity.
We pushed on together through the void of those youthful years over late-night chats, stolen kisses in the stairwell at Smiths, shared jelly buns gushing all over us,
notes and letters passed between friends, quick touches between hawk-like eyes watching us, secret rendezvous, tears, fears, and trepidations.
A ringing brought me back to the now with a jerk. Hues of dark purple and orange were pushing away the blue sky. Someone was tapping a glass, cheering for the kiss.
She blushed and slowly turned. Her shadow followed, wrapped around her and invaded her local atmosphere.
The door had shut and vanished without a sound.
But bad dreams never affect me, they're just a flash of memory, the mind playing while you rest. The lake reflected the deep purple of the sky.
I watched my water twin swirling and twisting, waiting for the terror to fade to a dull ache.