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Opening Words - The A-Bomb


Author: Alexander Aldarow    (all articles by this author)
Published on: March 25, 2002

I had a dream several nights ago. In that dream, I was ordered to drive a tank and block the traffic on a bridge, as a part of some military experiment. Afterwards, I joined the passers-by, who, in anticipation for the continuation of the experiment, were gathering around a catering table. And there were so many different people here, it wasn't a faceless crowd, like in other dreams - for the first time in my dreams, I could distinguish between every person, and have even recognized a few. But as we were focused on the food, soldiers rolled out a cannon, loaded... with an A-bomb! We, the citizens, were given ten minutes, and I started running, running away from the growing menace.

I've reached an entrance to a shelter; allegedly, it was already full, and a general there ordered me to run to another shelter, but not before I performed some obscure military saluting routine. However, there was no time to run for another shelter, and I was allowed into the current one. The funny thing is, the shelter was actually above the ground, a one-storied, quasi-military type building. I looked through the window to the outside, and saw it, growing on the background of the clear sky, reaching toward us, the black cloud of nuclear explosion (notice the anagram, nuclear - unclear, as opposed to clear). I dropped to the floor, spreading out, with my head, actually, in the direction of the explosion. Nothing happened.

I lived in the shelter for days, making friends, sleeping on the floor near a wall, in a ragged sleeping bag, trying to stay away from the stench of the bathroom. A realization came to me - if the explosion really took place, then the air we breathe should have been contaminated with radiation - yet, we are alive. I went to the outside, stepping into the deserted street of my childhood town; though only days have passed since the experiment/supposed explosion, the pavement was overgrown with a thick carpet of weeds; somewhere, a radio was speaking about the recent events. I went to our apartment, climbing up the stairs, hearing my parents and feeling thankful that they are alive; but before I saw them, the picture narrowed and closed in front of me, as if a television set was suddenly unplugged. I woke up, screaming... in the shelter. It was a dream inside a dream.

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I know and understand the spiritual reasoning. That people don't actually die, only their physical shells do; that all the negative things are here to teach us, as we grow through the many incarnations. Nor am I trying to be a doomsayer, prophesying what have already been over-prophesied. I am simply trying to describe the horror that I felt in that dream.

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To hurt another being is wrong. Nonetheless, when it is done "conventionally", by a bad thought, negative word, a punch, a stab, a shot, a regular bomb, and we hear about it in the news, it is still somehow, psychologically, less horrifying than... this. The nuclear weapon. It is, like Lovecraft's Old Ones, a "Thing That Should Not Be." It does not belong here, nor its grisly military accessories, like the ones exhibited in Ed's "Black Hole". I am not making neither political, nor humanitarian statement here. I'm telling you what I've seen, in my dream, and the terror that became my entire being. The A-Bomb.

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"And now I have become Death, the destroyer of the worlds."

Originally published in Project X Newsletter #70

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