by kimberly e ruth
On my way home from work I heard a man say it doesnâ€™t matter, sleep is the same wherever you do it, and I thought, yeah, for the moment. I remember the sun was strong and my eyes hurt like the time in elementary school when we were given cards to view the sun. Donâ€™t look directly into it, she said, unless you want to burn a hole in your eye. I didnâ€™t. Actually, that is a lie. I never looked at a card to view the sun. I never even stood outside an elementary school.Â It must have been something I saw on TV once, or a momentary dream, walking home from work. That thing will burn a hole in your brain, she used to say.
0 thoughts on “Big Dreams”
There’s a problem of consistency. And yes, yes, I know: consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds and whatnot. BUT When you say ‘in elementry school’ the reader takes it that the speaker’s experience while he or she was a child attending elementary school. Towards the end speaker says that he or she never stood outside an elementary school. So what does that mean? So the speaker has never been to elementary school?
One more thing, sleep isn’t the same anywhere. As a person who has had to sleep outside a few times (and I’m not talking about camping) it’s pretty different. When I’m sleeping in my bed, I’m not waking up every 5 minutes from the cold or from paranoia that someone is going to kick my ass and take my wallet.
This isn’t that good.
Thanks for the constructive criticism–my intention with this piece, which apparently failed, is exactly this confusion that you are criticizing. A confusion between being awake and being asleep, television and reality, big dreams v. the reality of one’s occupation–There is no consistency in these conflicts.
Also, I contemplated the statement about sleep being the same quite a bit in my head after i heard it (hence the reason I put it in a poem) and though the PLACE each person sleeps in is vastly different, when in REM–sleep IS the same FOR THAT MOMENT– of course when one wakes up its a different story. This idea of whether sleep is the same is an idea that I recently read in a short story by Raymond Carver–he’s pretty incredible if you get a chance to read him. The story I’m referring to is in “The Bath”
Well, I guess what this needs is some context. You could place it in short story or a longer narrative poem, or maybe just add a few sentences to clarify what’s going on.