image source: Google images, unknown photographer

An old nightmare.
In my dream there
is yellow chaos (well isn’t
there always chaos?).
I am filled with
adrenaline and
orange terror
and for once this
isn’t a dream about
going to the bathroom
in a wall-less stall.

My teacher is shouting
and I am under my
unsuitably buoyant
red chair.

This is it this is it this is it.
The world glows white.

I’m the only one left.

I think I hear a machine gun,
but it’s only my heart
wrenching me from
frantic airless sleep.

The sound of pounding
feet fades away.
The night is dark
and calm as gray.

There was nothing
cold about that war.

This is a Magpie Tale and part of my ABCs of Gratitude series. I’m grateful that, while this old dream is real, the nightmare it foretold hasn’t happened. Yet.


  1. Love the thoughts in this poem...to make something lovely out of terror is I think one of the main creative acts that we can accomplish while on earth! Great

  2. What a nightmare....love what you did with the prompt Bug. :-)

  3. No, it wasn't a cold war at all. There was always that red, hot poker of fear present.

  4. Interesting take on an unusual prompt...

  5. It was under our desks for us in the 50s!!!

  6. I have that same wall-less stall dream...

  7. I love your use of colour in your piece and the ominous 'yet' at the end.

  8. This made me a bit anxious! Why do people have dreams that are wall-less...that seems quite common...like falling or running!

  9. I remember "drills" in elementary school when we'd file into the subterranean halls beneath our school and stand, neatly lined up, in the garish yellow light reflecting off metal gray walls. Spooky? Yes! I tend to be a bit claustrophobic so my nightmare was thinking about what it would be like to have to remain there for an extended period of time in case of an atomic attack. My seven-year-old self felt nauseated at the mere thought of it!


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