A Bad Dream

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March SOLC–Day 23

I wake suddenly. What is that?

I’m curled in a ball beneath a tangle of sheets. My shoulders are raised and tense, my breathing ragged and my fists clenched. Dim memories of rattling, phlegmy Sleestak* breathing, unspoken threats and shuddering fear flicker through my mind. I’m overheated again and push back the covers. Oh, it’s another nightmare. I tend to have bad dreams when I get overheated, but I can’t resist the welcoming weight of a pile of blankets. At this time in my life when my body’s thermometer is a bit wacky, my dreams often drift into the realm of dark and creepy.

This particular dream is hard to shake, though I can’t remember the particulars–just the dreadful inhuman breathing and the threatening atmosphere. Lying here in the dark, still sleepy, I deliberately push my mind into new channels.  The dream lurks, a dark smudge in my brain, insidiously threatening to spread and pull me back in.  What will I write today?

Suddenly I hear it again. That threatening, rattling breathing.  What is it? Where is it coming from? But I’m still awake… Aren’t I?
The thoughts sprint through my mind as tension clenches me again.
And then I realize. That breathing? That awful, rattling breathing from my dream? It came from my husband snoring beside me. My very own Sleestak.

 

*Note–I’m dating myself with the Sleestak reference but for some reason that’s the description that lingered in my  mind when I woke this early this morning, though I think they hissed instead of rattled. Why Sleestaks? Who knows!  The mind is a funny thing. It’s been close to 40 years since I watched the show Land of the Lost and many decades since I’ve thought of these creatures.  According to Wikipedia, “Sleestaks are devolved, green humanoids with both reptilian and insectoid features; they have scaly skin with frills around the neck, bulbous unblinking eyes, pincer-like hands, stubby tails, and a single blunt horn on top of the head…” Charming, right? And in case you missed the original show or have forgotten–here’s a photo:

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12 thoughts on “A Bad Dream

  1. showgem says:

    Nightmares are not fun.The heavy breathing would have been scarier than the faces of the sleestaks.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Amy says:

    I’m overheating and the nightmare of the husband snoring beside me! Yes, that made me chuckle because I’ve been there too! You have such a way with the flow of your words, Molly. Great slice on this early Wednesday morning.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Cindy says:

    This post has it all: I was scared right with you when you woke, I was in awe of the images you created: that the brain has “channels”. I chuckled at the thought of your husband snoring loudly beside you. Finishing with that picture- yikes! now I know why you were scared!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Linda Baie says:

    You wrote showing such tension that I wondered what was going to happen! I don’t remember Sleestaks at all, but they certainly look scary. Glad you discovered it was just your husband snoring, your own Sleestak!

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      I have to say that when I realized his snoring had wormed its way into my overheated dream, I was tempted to kick him. I managed to restrain myself though. 🙂

      Like

  5. Rita K. says:

    Your description is amazing. The well-chosen words and images make me feel like I’m dreaming too. Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Melanie Roy says:

    You expertly weaved terror and humor into this post! I do remember those ugly guys! I also remember a girl with blond braids and a red and white checkered shirt. Is this the same show?

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      Yes! I’m so glad you remember it, too. It was so funny how the phrase Sleestak breathing just took up residence in my brain! I had to check for the spelling and to find a photo and discovered the show was on in the mid 70s. It’s seriously campy! You should check out a clip. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Like

  7. Christine says:

    Thank you for including the picture. It gave me a better idea of your horrible dream. Your post was quite vivid.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I loved your description of the breathing. I laughed when you said it was your husband. When my husband breathes or snores, he sounds like Breezy Bruin. PS I loved watching Land of the Lost.

    Liked by 1 person

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