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Short story: Sleepwalking

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OCTOBER 23, 2016


 can never remember my dreams, at least the ones I have when I’m asleep. I’ve been asleep for a week now, I think.

I pull off my blanket and sidle down the stairs. The night air tells me to go back to bed with its icy chill, but I’m already sleepwalking.

I amble down the asphalt, empty intersections under my feet; this ghost town that makes no sense, this home that’s only home to homesickness. Car lights in this distance — I walk toward them dazed. I see a face and save my soul. She’s curt, but at least she exists. The dream dissipates …

Angry. The five o’clock nightmare enters reality. I’m so angry. She leaves me forever, for the night.

There’s a homeless man shivering. I give him my eyes (my ears are numb). He looks at me and I see how blind I’ve been. I look at him and he gives me his hard-won treasure.

Berkeley is naked without the learners. I see it naked; it’s unashamed.

Where’s my friend? He’s high, and his friend will die. There’s not much time, for anyone. I start running. How am I running? I’m asleep.

She says, “Fuck you.” Fuck her (true romance).

I look up finally, and for the first time the moon singes my eyes with white hot light. It’s so beautiful. It’s beauty. Life happens for some seconds. It’s just me and the universe and the moon now. She’s gone.

I’m back on the street counting headlights — there’s none. There’s nothing.

I climb the stairs onto the roof. Suddenly, everyone. The whole world is on the roof. I look through the telescope at the moon. It’s red with scattered light from the Earth. It’s red! It feels emotions! I love the moon! I love everything! A single tear makes the telescope lens wet. And then the bright sliver that’s left of the moon disappears — all at once, it’s gone, eclipsed by our planet itself. Holy fucking shit! We’re floating in space, and it’s all so fragile and scary and mind-numbingly beautiful and what a place and what a universe and what a life I get to live. I go back home — sprinting as fast as I can under a moon that’s suddenly grown tired of hiding in the world’s shadow. I’m tired too. Let’s not hide anymore.

The months are passing so fast, the years, the loves. And the end comes too soon. But I love her! No! No! I’m crying. She’s gone. I’m dying all over again — drowning in the fake puddle of fake tears from the boy who didn’t care about her.

She was wrong.

I’m not numb anymore. I’m awake; I’m alive. All the emotions are ripping my flesh apart, but I need her to know. I need her. “Love is not proud,” the Bible says, and my pride is gone. “Love never fails.” Love failed. “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love.” I go back to sleep.

Logan Goldberg is a writer for the Weekender. Contact him at [email protected]

OCTOBER 23, 2016