11​.​) The Yellow Eyes [ii]

from by Jesse Livingston

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That night, I dreamed I was in an open, dusty place. There was a huge dead forest nearby. A sick twilight flooded through the trees at an angle which meant the sun was almost set. Somewhere behind me, a dirt road stretched off into the distance. Away to my right, there was a low wooden fence which made a kind of corral. It wasn’t a corral, though, because it was just a line of fence with a dirt track running around it in a circle. There was another fence between the corral and where I stood. Sometimes it seemed to be yards away, and sometimes I was leaning on it. I could see the edge of the forest where some of the trees had been hacked down to make the fence. The few stumps were dwarfed by the rest of the ancient rotted mass which swallowed the horizon. There may have been a house somewhere.

In the open corral, a wolf was walking on its hind legs. It was tall—as tall as a man, or taller. It was walking around the track in a jerky gait.

I had the impression of activity going on around me. Everyone was doing things, but none of it seemed to relate to me at all. The wolf was still a ways off, but it was getting steadily closer to where I stood. I saw how deliberately it was walking. It didn’t wobble or stumble like a dog does when she tries to walk upright. Its paws were stretched in front of it. Its mouth hung open.

Suddenly, I was very afraid. The other people were busy. I couldn’t ask them for help because they already knew about the wolf and didn’t care. I could turn and run down the road into the distance, but I knew, if I tried, I wouldn’t be able to run, and the distance wasn’t a real distance. The horizon was fake and the trees were older than any trees anywhere...

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from A Thousand Lifetimes in an Hour, released December 21, 2012

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Jesse Livingston Denver, Colorado

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