Emerging from a blackout, one finds oneself in the midst of the strangest scenarios. You re-enter your body like a time traveler and need to catch up quick lest you are discovered.
JJ re-entered his body, sitting on a park bench in Fort Collins, CO. Sitting next to him, hairy and hulking, was the Mountain Dude.
“I dreamt of a broken safe in the woods, full of acorns.”
“Huh?” JJ was disoriented and wondered what had happened. How was he here? Where did the Mountain Dude come from? And, holy shit, where was the car?
“I was walking down a mountainside. Saw an appliance or something down the hill in a clearing. Got closer and it was a safe, busted open, with acorns spilling out.”
“A safe? Who was safe?”
The Mountain Dude looked at JJ. “Man, you’re really out of it. It was a safe, like where you keep your valuables. In the middle of the woods, busted open, with acorns spilling out. Hundreds of acorns.”
“When did this happen?”
“Dude! It was a dream.”
A dream. Maybe this was a dream, too. How could the Mountain Dude, who JJ instantly recognized as the Mountain Dude from back east, be sitting here in a park in Colorado talking to him about dreams.
“Is this real?”
“I’m real. I’m really real. The dream? What kind of symbol is a broken safe in the woods?”
JJ looked at the park. Late summer, late afternoon. People walked their dogs and threw Frisbees. The foothills of the Rockies rose beyond the town, sage and brown. He felt quavery and dry, his head too big for his body. Standing would be a major issue. Worse, there were knuckle-dragging beasts, just beyond the fog in his head and heart. Feelings and memories chasing him, making threatening movements, shadows in the fog. If that fog clears…
“Precious things are kept in a safe, locked away,” JJ said.
“Right. Not just documents. Gems and jewels.”
“So maybe the things you hold precious, locked up inside, need to come out. Or they’re already out.”
“So the woods are my soul or unconscious,” the Mountain Dude said. “And I come upon this safe that’s broken open.”
“Full of God’s thoughts.”
“Acorns are God’s thoughts. Simple and perfect, but not too perfect.”
“Dude. I knew you could do it.”
“You knew? How?”
“You told me. In the bar. An interpreter of dreams you said you were. A seeker of symbols. I pulled you out of there before they threw you out of there.” The Mountain Dude stood up. “And I’ve been rewarded.”
“I have to go off and think on these images.”
“What about me?”
“You’ll have to carry on and find your own acorns.”
The Mountain Dude walked down the grassy hill toward the foothills beyond.
JJ stared after him, befogged and befuddled. What now? Then he yelled at the departing Mountain Dude, “Have you seen a Hyper Blue Metallic Camaro?”
7 thoughts on “Safe in the Woods”
Love this piece!
Thanks for reading, Rosie. Miss you guys.
Poor lost JJ!!!!
Yes, he is adrift. Who knows how it will turn out in the end… Thanks for reading!
Amy’s right, this is a classic. You are so talented.
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