This morning I was lynched.
Me and two or three other black men ( I was a man this morning) are hung from rafters in a barn-like building by several white men for a non-descript crime. Terror envelopes me enough to want to wake up but curiosity keeps me in this kinda-wake-closer-to-sleep state.
I am bold, maybe it’s terrified, enough to tug at the cuff around my neck–it’s like the leather collar of a pet’s leash and not the standard rope noose–and am reprimanded by the men for my conduct. Then I am raised higher and faster; faster, higher until I feel my neck pushed back like a zealous nod caught in freeze frame. I don’t know how I know but I am sure this is not what death feels like; the lump in my throat is so thick and the excited voices of my would-be murderers clear and resonant…I realize my neck has not snapped but I fake what I know of death: eyes closed and breath held.
The men leave the barn satisfied and I am able to get down. I retrieve something heavy and metal and bash the head of the young man who returns to the barn and discovers I am not swinging from the rafters anymore. Then I run, weapon still in hand. And run. And run. Aparently undetected, though I am careful to remain inconspicuous through this plantation/farm, into some overgrown grassy area where I hear barking dogs on my trail.
My only choice, I see, is water. A Caribbean clear body of it but since I can’t swim this doesn’t comfort me. I think-pray and decide I’d rather die like this. Across the body of water I can see in plain sight, a manor– a stone home surrounded by lush humid looking gardens. An older white lady in a bonnet takes my hand; black women in white cotton eyelet–that material that makes you feel like spring–smile and rush to take me down some stairs; apparently for safe keeping.
I hear the voices of my would-be murderers promising evil. What prevents them from lynching us all I cannot tell. But the older white lady stands her ground answering them though she sounds tentative. She even runs into an interior dungeon area in what seems to be hiding.
Maybe it’s the mouse trap in my real-life kitchen.
My heart threatens to beat right out of my chest and my curiosity no longer bears the same gleam. After all, curiosity killed the cat.
I leave the dream where it is and wake up.