Trip Stories Contest
Posted 07 October 2002 - 08:42 AM
Posted 07 October 2002 - 09:35 AM
Posted 08 October 2002 - 01:29 AM
But I still
Posted 08 October 2002 - 01:32 AM
I'm still reeling??
This post hit me like a fucking truck!!!
Did you catch that liscense plate????
Posted 08 October 2002 - 01:36 AM
When I saw it was the Chicken Avenger, from JP...
I split a grin from ear to ear... can hardly wait...
still laughing, and, haven't even started!!!... here I go!
OMG.... Ya freak! Great work.,...
But K-dog stole the show...
Posted 08 October 2002 - 02:25 AM
But this October was different. In his dreams, he found himself in the middle of a garden, always in the full moon’s light. The pumpkins lay like huge stones at his feet and the brittle leaves of the corn rustled in the breeze. He smelled the air and watched the shadows. His heart raced and although the garden seemed like his own, it felt different, occupied and surreal. Through his mind ran all the things he been taught, all the mistakes he had made, all the pain he had felt. He was waiting for something but he didn’t know what. In the dim light he could see a spider’s web. It was the biggest web he had ever seen. But he could not see the spider and moved away from the web, falling, but some force pushed him back. The web danced in the breeze and drops of dew rolled down the strands.
And then before he woke, always, the web seemed to come alive and move toward him. With all his strength, he tried to run. That’s when he would wake, finding himself cold in sweat.
During the day he would try to forget the dream. But it never worked. He would be reminded of it often, perhaps a smell or the way the light bounced off the eyes of people he worked with. At lunch one day he read an article about how spiders often wrap their prey in silk, like a cocoon he thought, and saved them. In the evenings before bed the sounds of the old house, once familiar, unnerved him. Was that the wind? Is something in the house?
He wrote to me the day before I visited him. He told me he was leaving, but didn’t know where. He said it would be soon. Then in his last line he said perhaps what was trying to trap him was really setting him free.
When I got to his house, it was dusk. He had a line of jack-o-lanterns, all lit, that went from his porch to his garden. I knocked. But no one answered. The door was ajar, so I went inside. I yelled his name. Nothing. I walked back onto the porch and followed the line of smiling jack-o-lanterns to the garden. On the last jack-o-lantern, on the edge of the garden, he had attached a note. Jim, it read, I’m gone. You’re welcome to stay.
It was that night I began having the dream, too.
Posted 08 October 2002 - 07:21 AM
Posted 08 October 2002 - 07:24 AM
Posted 08 October 2002 - 11:19 AM
Posted 08 October 2002 - 01:23 PM
the second paragraph is money in itself IMO, poetic, descriptive, nice piece of work Circles.
Posted 08 October 2002 - 06:50 PM
Posted 08 October 2002 - 08:38 PM
Posted 08 October 2002 - 08:48 PM
my button clicks "general", "growing" and, when overly confused, which i am often, "archives".
very good story, eye. thanks for writing it.
Posted 08 October 2002 - 09:26 PM
Posted 09 October 2002 - 07:08 AM
Posted 09 October 2002 - 07:10 AM
Crazy Shit man... I wanna live on a 13th floor
Posted 09 October 2002 - 10:18 AM
Posted 09 October 2002 - 03:25 PM
In the distance, a barely visible red flash backlit the sky like heat lightening. Roger's head began to pound. As he staggered forward, across mossy rocks and through twisted passageways, the crimson flickering ahead became brighter and the buzzing in his skull intensified. A shiver shot through Roger's spine as he felt some grotesque hand swipe at his legs.
Suddenly, the red light in the foreground began to explode as the repetitive sound in his mind revealed its origin. Roger sat up quickly, suddenly quite alert, but still quite horrified. He flicked off his alarm clock and wiped the sweat of his forehead. He was quite relieved to realize he had been dreaming, but remained troubled by his dream's meaning. The magic he had consumed the night before had revealed that he needed a change; Roger had to escape his life, even if for only a week. He had to seek something greater... That message must have seeped into his dreams.
By the end of work the next day, Roger had made up his mind and committed himself to seeking a new experience. After a quick phone call, he had his travel agent arranging a trip to the Island of Janitzio in Mexico. Instead of pounding back whiskey sours and chasing skirt at the same, lame office Halloween party, Roger would mix with the locals during Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead.
Three days later, Roger received the FedEx he was waiting for. The envelope contained one plane ticket to Oaxaca and instructions for getting to Lake Pátzcuaro, where Janitzio waited. For two weeks, Roger suffered from uncontrollable anticipation. He kept his mind clear, though, so he could focus on the events to come. Instead of eating bad candy and orange cupcakes on Halloween, Roger would be immersed in spirituality and a millennia-old tradition. Instead of blowing into a noisemaker through the plastic mouth of some cheap costume, Roger would be marching in a midnight vigil for the dead.
The two weeks until the trip passed by quickly despite the pile of work Roger had to finish before the month's end. Even the long flight to Mexico and the subsequent passage to the Island of Janiztio seemed to pass rapidly. After unpacking in his hotel room and a good night's sleep, Roger was ready for the next evening's festivities. The hotel concierge helped Roger find a local seamstress to outfit him for the events and also gave him directions to a local village where the festivities were carried out according to hundreds of years of tradition.
That night, Roger ventured out to that small village, ready for anything. Roger, despite his limited command of the Spanish language, managed to introduce himself to the priest presiding over the preparations and earn himself a warm invitation to the night's events.
After a sumptuous feast, with the entire village present, everyone bowed their heads in prayer. Roger, the only non-native present, participated as best he could. Prayers gave way to chanting, marching, and dancing. The complete community was swaying and chanting and dancing in a rhythmic orgy of sound and motion. After hours of this frenzied movement and song, the locals began to break into groups and drift toward their houses. Roger, exhausted and thrilled, walked over to the priest he had met earlier, to thank him. The priest, speaking to circle of older men, invited Roger to join them. The priest managed to communicate to Roger that these men, the elders of the village, were about to reenact an ancient sacrifice to the gods. This, according to the priest, would complete the celebration of the Day of the Dead. When Roger agreed to participate, the entire circle seemed to understand him; a knowing grin crept across the faces of at least half the men present.
The group of about a dozen set out into the nearly starless night, without a map or directions. After a few hours of hiking into the jungle-like center of the island, the group reached a cave mouth. Roger slumped against a tree to rest as the priest lit a torch and illuminated the small opening to the cave. Surrounding the entrance were hundreds of glimmering gold mushrooms. Without a word spoken, it was clear to Roger that these must play some part in the ceremony. The men skillfully gathered the fungus in a few baskets and separated them into individual portions. When the priest handed about a half-dozen of them to Roger, he ate them quickly, despite a vague premonition that he shouldn't.
When everyone had finished eating their portion, the priest began to make his way into the cave and the group followed. It couldn't have been more than ten minutes before Roger began to feel the power. His consciousness was shattered like a sheet of glass hit by a tack hammer. The flickering torchlight and meandering rock structures merged and swirled around into bright, colorful patterns. Even as Roger tripped and fell to his knees, he could not garner enough awareness to get up again. He shouted out and the echo of his voice was transformed in his overtaxed brain. Whispers, cackles, and chants seemed to swarm back at him from the cave walls and crevices. As Roger slipped into another dimension, he felt arms lifting him and carrying him somewhere into the heart of the cave. Roger could feel, see, and hear nothing except what his frantic mind manufactured. It was as if Jackson Pollock was frenetically painting on his eyeballs and alien voices were harmonizing in his ears. Wave after wave of intensity slapped upon the shore of his soul.
After what must have been hours, Roger awoke. He lay prone on a slab of stone in the center of the cave. Still soaring, Roger could not be sure if what he was seeing was real or imagined. Through blurred vision, Roger though he saw the priest a few dozen yards away, presiding over a fire as the men chanted. Nothing was the same as it was before though; the men looked pale and crazed. As Roger attempted to sit up, he heard whispers from every corner of the cave around him. Suddenly, he noticed that some mystic symbol had been painted on his chest and it was...glowing. The priest turned and cackled and the men gathered around the fire rose to their feet at once. Though he hadn't noticed it before, Roger swore he could see eyes glinting from darkened corners of the cave. The priest shouted a string of words in a language that must have predated Spanish by five hundred years. At once, the murky figures lurking in the shadows began to stumble toward Roger and the band of men around the fire reached out toward Roger and began walking toward him. As the room converged on him, the character drawn on Roger's heart began to glow brighter. Despite the psychedelic haze still shrouding Roger's mind, he realized that this 'reenactment' was anything but!
Roger darted from the table and began to run. He knew it couldn't do much good, but he ran with every bit of strength in his body. The rocky surroundings were almost pitch black and full of swirling fog. As Roger, still delirious, plodded forward, he felt cold hands swipe at his back and legs. Whispers, howls, and grunts pursued him relentlessly in the darkness. Bumbling and tripping on, Roger felt a faint glimmer of hope as he made out a hint of illumination in the distance. Praying that it was daylight, Roger shuffled along the mossy rocks, avoiding the footsteps that seemed to be only a scant few yards behind him. Roger's head throbbed as the commotion behind him grew louder and louder. As he felt an unearthly fingernail scratch across his ankle, the horizon began to beam with maroon light. With what felt like an explosion in his brain, Roger abruptly shot up. Covered in sweat, Roger took stock of the situation and turned off his alarm clock. Still breathing hurriedly, Roger calmed himself and settled back into bed, the details of his nightmare quickly fading. "Must have been those mushrooms from last night," Roger thought. "That, and in a couple weeks, it'll be Halloween."