Old Friend

Dreams are thought to exist in your sleep. A succession of images, or emotions passing through the mind during sleep. This definition is too clean and too sanitary. An involuntary vision occurring to a person when awake. This is a better definition. An aspiration; goal; aim; a wild or vain fancy. This is the definition people are thinking of when they ask about a persons dreams.

I write poker stories and most of the stories are a retelling of my life experiences. I write in a pure raw form and I try to capture the true emotions of the circumstances. I make no apologies for the grittiness of my stories. They are my stories and they are my emotions. I include the things that I want you to know and the things that you should not.

The movie Rounders is my favorite movie of all time. I describe the movie as a love story. I realize it is one of the worst love stories of all time. Rounders is a love story – just not the conventional one between two people. Instead, it is about the beginning of a great love affair between a man and his vice – one you know that will eventually break him down into smaller and smaller pieces. It is the all time true love story of the one who will never leave you, never forsake you, will always welcome you back with open arms…The movie is a poker story. The movie is about a young mans dream to go to Las Vegas and win the World Series of Poker. Everyone had a chance to see the dream of Mike McDermott.

The readers of my stories have asked to know about the dreams of Victor Shaw. I am not a dreamer. I am grounded in reality. My formal education is in engineering. Engineers are not open minded and never take risks. They do not allow themselves to dream.

My dreams are the involuntary visions that occur while I am awake. They are like a blur in my brain and I have no control over the images as they go rushing by. I shake my head, I rub my eyes, I clasp my head between my hands; I want the dream to stop. I hate the feeling of my brain running unchecked. I want to be in control.

My dream is unclear and disjointed. The images are not smooth. The story has no beginning and no end. The chapters come out of order. The meanings can not be captured in words.

Come on. Climb aboard. We are going on a dream.

The room is large, smoke hangs in the air, faces all staring, walking straight ahead, I can’t see, noise is loud, lights flashing and everything is jumbled.

Why can’t I remember?

Everything is different yet eerily the same.

I was here many years ago. I have been here hundreds of times. I am lost in a familiar maze.

I have the answers, but where have they hidden the questions?

Can I turn off some of these senses? I have but one brain through which it all must travel.

Run, run, run into the abyss, run, for, in the depths lies the comfort I am seeking. Run.

For a brief second, I feel like I am staring at a familiar face.

No, this is nobody I know and of course the face is familiar.

They all look the same at some point.

The walls are the same but yet they are different; perhaps they should have been painted.

Time has not been good to her.

I used to think of this place as my own personal utopia and yet I feel like I am entering the express to the river Styx. The Eagles roaring in my brain as I try to tune out my mind.

Yes I see the face again, but it is a much younger face this time.

As real as it may seem.

The warmth is so cold that the blood begins to boil.

The soothing stench of her age is no longer able to fend me away.

I find myself drawn in.

I know that something about this attraction is unholy.

Way down low; deep in my guts; I feel the rumble.

I am running as fast as I can, yet my feet are barely moving.

She pulls me in. I feel myself drawn to her. Everything about her repulses me.

I was there when she was born. So pure and unsoiled. She springs from my brain.

I made her myself and yet my hands never touched her.

Admire her beauty from afar. She is my Siren.

I am a drunken frat boy and she is my sorority sister.

The crunching under my feet roars through my head. Thunder.

The smell of electric smoke pouring from my brain.

I find myself inside of her.

She is warm and I feel good inside of her.

The forbidden fruit tastes sweet.

Silence. Deafening silence. I am no longer alone in this crowded room.

She feels different to me.

The barking dog cowers and whimpers.

My senses sharpen and the picture comes clear.

My dream ends not in a climax, but in an awakening.

The stranger I love is my old friend and she is spent and tired at the same time she is new and unique. Every time I meet an old friend for the first time.

She belongs to me.

Only in my dreams.

Please be careful exiting the dream. Check the overhead bins and make sure you take your baggage with you.


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