Tuesday, November 13, 2007


I dreamed of my death and it was murder. It wasn’t a dream while sleeping, but a vision, striking in its clarity, that appeared in my field of sight, external and internal simultaneously. My eyes were filled with the scene.

I was there on the east side of the city, early evening, when the night is dark but not so dense as to feel as though it had depth. My body was face up on the sidewalk, just to the edge of the streetlight’s focus. Right arm above my head, left arm slightly twisted back, resting against the dirty sidewalk. Knees bent, pointing to the right, one shoe on, one slipped off as if it had been left behind when I fell, leaving five of my toes exposed to the cold night coming in.

My purse was still slung over my shoulder and across my chest, now standing up against my side. By my upper wrist, a thin trickle of blood branched off from the large pool of glossy deep darkness spreading out from the back of my head.

Shot. I had been shot while walking to my car in this gritty neighborhood where I came to do in-home visits with women from some of the most violent places on earth. They feel safe here. Everything is relative.

The shooter was long gone, having missed his intended target, who also had fled the street.

I saw my body in the black cotton T-shirt dress and silk tiger-print scarf I wore to work. Where was my book bag? I couldn’t see it, even though I saw the whole scene from directly above—a bird’s-eye view in reverse, a spiral going slowly up instead of spinning down into a clearer focus. I saw myself from 20 feet up, and then farther, and then looked away for just the tiniest fraction of a second and the scene was gone.

It was so real, but I was not unnerved by the scene that had billowed and spread out to take over my field of vision. I was dead by someone else’s hand, but I felt no pain, no fear. I was gone.

No comments: