Death Slips the Nightmare Seed

Jeff Rozalewicz

 

Awaking from a black and howling precipice within my tingling head, I heard the sounds of a creature expelling a thick mixture of chunky liquid. It was still dark, and as I peered into the room I felt the shadows shuffle closer, as if they sensed my momentarily blinded vulnerability. I called out my wife's name into that darkness hoping it would penetrate the world of ghosts. I heard a muffled moan come from beside me. I shifted my weight on my upraised elbows and turned my head to my left. A darkened silhouette lay in a crumpled mass beneath the mess of strewn sheets conforming to her skin for warmth. I ran a trembling hand over the curves of her thigh. She seemed safe and comfortable. The miserable sound was fainter than I had thought, at least from within a dream. What had I been dreaming about? It was something troubling. I felt it, from my fingertips, slight spasms of memory and muscle disputing a forgotten past, to the sticky heat of the back of my throat. I inhale a puddle of mucous from behind my nose and force it back up from my scratchy throat into my mouth. It's dry, so I let it sit on my tongue for a minute, playing with it, pressing it up to the dry, top caverns, a slippery delicacy, squirming; it felt alive sliding in different directions, frightened from the molesting force of my tongue. There was a hardened piece of snot contained in the center of the mucous blob, a hardened heart of this creature inside.


I tossed the covers from my lower body and swung my legs off the edge of—sudden fire shot through my calf. Damn spasms. I clenched my eyes shut and tried to focus my mind elsewhere. As soon as the tension began to subside, I tried to move my lower right leg slowly, and rise from the bed, but I was hit with another wave of multiple stings sliding together in a crashing tide within me. All nerves tensed as I waited to regain myself. My eyes were quickly adjusting to the dark room, and it seemed as though malevolent spirits occupied the room, but I attributed this to a strange, seemingly familiar yet foreign sense of place, emigrated from between my states of consciousness. To what extent could demons lure one's physical vicinity outside one's dreaming, and to what damage could they cause during unconsciousness? Such thoughts were foolish, I know, but their persistent spiraling through the chasms of my mind, the metaphysical lines that—that sound again. That miserable, sickly sound of expulsion and anguish from the throat of someone or something rendered speechless. The sound had control. Clutched and squeezed at my thoughts, forced sanity to ooze, citrus seeds pushed from the core and over a horizon. I felt my thoughts come and pass like frequency waves, bursting and fading, without much time to grasp and comprehend. I glided through the darkened bedroom to the door, through the dissipated shadows and ghosts of our past presence. Lethargic, I stumbled down the hall towards the violent

 


Heaving. That's what the noise was. Someone vomiting. Charles. What had he eaten that was any different? We don't usually give him table scraps, and—fuck, maybe the wife had baked something and left it out. She had been doing that recently. Baking, for no particular reason. Like pie; pie is splendid for any occasion. I was filled with warmth and—


Vomiting. In the guest bathroom at the end of the hall. Fucking thing sounded like death. Worry grabbed my ankles and dragged them in a hurried dance, twisted nerves and blood flow jolting now. I came to the open door, the sick and horrifying growl shaking the blackness within. I flipped the switch and entered as my eyes were blinded by illumination. I feverishly rubbed at my eyes, sore by the piercing light. Let the vision take me by the throat.


There was our beloved, Charles.


He was in the bathtub. His big frame, covered in black wolf-like hair, shook and swayed. Long black hair matted and dripping, light reflecting off—is that blood? It looked like he had been standing, his back arched, but his legs had given partially given out. Or slipped. The off-white porcelain basin was being filled with a dark and thick liquid. The excessive expelling created eddies around larger chunks of what looked to be pieces of meat (like internal organs), with frothy ripples snaking out. Taking no notice of the light casting unforgiving grace on his ruin, his wet and matted neck gave a violent tremble that seemed to ruffle his very essence. A gurgled howl was cut short and pushed downwards, past from where it originated, as a second mass of waste (twins) exploded out with surges of stomach juices. This all happened before I reached him, hand twitching at my sides, wanting to reach out, but it seemed as though any comfort or aid was hopeless. I don't think I had time, I mean, my eyes had to adjust, and to react to something like that…like that…like that madness that came gliding across the white and blinding snow banks of some lost figment, some memory violently compartmentalized into the damp and musk absence of light and coherence. My head hurt. The jab of complementary dizziness caught my ankles in the undertow and pulled me beneath the mighty waves of anxiety. Detachment collapse loose binding glue unglued fold over loose folds off pectoral tender muscle. Collapse.

 

Hunger. Stomach rumbled into the bowels of unforgiving calling to brain waves static (check this frequency). I coughed another wad of phlegm up from my coated esophagus and splattered the bathroom tile. Bathroom tiles, how it's been a while…why was I on the bathroom floor?


I tried to get up, and I noticed that my legs, crumpled and pressed against the wall no the cabinet beneath the sink were asleep. I exhaled deeply and my chest hurt. Deep. Deep burrowing like someone's hands sifting through my insides and pulling. I couldn't remember how to inhale without feeling like I was doing it wrong, there was tearing in my center…let's just lay here awhile. I stretched my legs out, but they were still asleep. Let them be. I became hypnotized in simple curiosity as the snot wad that I had splattered the floor in front of me. Milky white droplets in brilliant (random?) arrangement around the epicenter, a nebula of cloudy golden swirls and dazzling specks that tapered off into brown. I started heaving again and my lungs gave birth to a placenta of blood. So this is the spawn of my sinuses. Thought I had smelled blood in the night.


I smelled the epitome of awful (decomposing flesh). I looked to my left, no, my right.


"Oh, hello Charles."


He's sleeping in the tub. Heh.


"Having good dreams in there, boy? Silly bastard." It's going to take me some time to get up, here. A hunger filled with emptiness lead me to the kitchen, and I stared at the refrigerator door. I'm confused. I stared, with my dumb look on my face, mouth slightly open, lips trying to feel the tingle of airflow eddying around my upper gums above my front teeth. I rubbed my eyes, sore and open your eyes wider, you fuck. You're losing it. Losing what it yourself me no way but moments of silence and questions answered through silence and shifted out of focus through the absence of echo. Yet the echo was dominant to the hollow of the silence. The thickness of a sound is often negatively associated with suffocation and musk overwhelming fear and death the hollow is temple to whatever may come good or wicked tablua rasa. The wicked can rise quickly from the embryonic darkness of the unconscious and inhospitable to waking life unknown. Silence strangles or soothes hands cool as wet coal cover your eyes I should go back to sleep... escape.


No.


Just go to the cabinet. I drifted to it. Ghostlike fingers length stretch for the dented cardboard siding. Encasement of late night goodness. Comfort and ecstatic in lethargic hollow. Flakes of enveloped sugar. I walked over to the counter with the blue box in my hand, darkened in my hands, lost in the absence of light, I searched for flakes of enlightenment. With the careful equilibrium of milk and cereal, I thought I had found nirvana, against the undertow of milk and the drowning flakes the ones on the bottom soggy and decomposed victims of accumulation and …but villains of the cereal underworld. You had to get the ones on the top but I liked saving the ones in the middle. In between both worlds it was like tasting death in the flake. Trapped in a limbo with an awakening libido, insomnia spurred lingo of cereal marketing cascading memory banks of the mascot animations engaging in a breakfast of eating their product through cunnilingus. Staring me in the face with a crackle and a pop, no snapping of the fingers 'cause this shit ain't the crispy rice, but a bowl of corn. Flakes. Scarred surface lining for rough sailing in a sea of drowning soldiers don't you know that ultimate tragedy is in the betrayal during that last clinging for safety. Leech wet and decomposing tendencies spreading like leprosy spread in a foul rim near the rim of the bowl crusting over with rapidity. A part of your balanced breakfast.


I looked at my reflection in the spoon and see only a blur.


The darkened shadow slums with a grin. I stick my tongue out. There is no spoon, said the milkmaid to the cow who was deep-throated by the hen who never did squeeze the golden egg from her flea infested vaginal tract. Hens don't have dicks you dumb shit now wake up the gimp. Sleep is what I need to cure these warped visions. I rotate the silver spoon and gently lowered it towards the flooded bowl. With a sensitive motion by neuron senses I submerse the nebulous utensil. It sifts down through the hard and crunch and scoops at the abysmal flakes, sugar coating in danger. I have a sudden but brief image of wax nibbles from a candle, lukewarm. I push it from my mind and lift the glorious spoonful of cereal from a new and milky graveyard, dripping in streams colliding, white. My pie hole opens and dried lips crack, cells separating and splitting like dried mud as the cereal breaches and gets deposited from the spoon to the surface of my eager tongue, desert lips closing on the spoonful as it exits the opening in my face to ensure a mess-free bite of late night comfort. Ethereal crunches as my teeth ground the flakes, jaws in a smooth and rhythmic grind like seaweed caressing the gums of a drowning child. My tongue slows—reverse, repulsive feel of queer bubbles…on…attached…growing mold from the pores of the baked corn. What. The. Hell--is on my flakes, like crusted anemones waiting to be fed on, sly and deceitful to the predator, now food to be fed.


I don't swallow. Something… doesn't feel right... I'm so tired and my mind is traveling in a timeless land but it still calls from the abyss and it tells me and by it I mean me and I tell me I should just spit it out and not bother. I looked in anyway.


Staring, tired eyes of mine grew wilder and wilder like Nietzsche on Nyquil thrown in the arachnophobic end scene of that nightmare producing Stephen King epic. The taste of fear (fantastic) in a spoonful of flakes. Flakes frosted with translucent eggs, miracle balls ejected from uterus tube way arachnid subway for the coating of this cereal how fucking long was it open and my god where the hell is the exterminator. Someone call John Goodman he's probably just drinking his coffee. Fear and nausea mixing in esophageal contractions and I'm trying to control these regurgitations but the acid is so sweet. Rampant revulsions irritated my skin as oozing encasements for spider babies wiggle through jellifying eggs moist amongst crisped corn islands sinking in ruin. On my tongue oh my God my tongue lolls amongst horrified moans making melancholy meter and poorly emitted wails choked out. Throat muscles implode as simultaneous gagging ensues my body trying to expel the horror of the arachnids, little baby spider legs scurrying against quivering gums, little bodies squirming out of the sleep of birth. Birth. In the soggy mess of flakes. In my mouth. Fucking spider babies in my mouth. Disgusting nightmare this must be, temporary delusion. Little white balls of decomposing birth sacks embargoed in with the sugar clumps drifting from the flakes. Where did these even come from to begin with? Where was the mother of it all? Somewhere in the shadows, lurking in a corner, perhaps, in the drains. Dark skeleton digit with alien eyes silently laughing, the air is filled with its piercing tragedy, sacrificial destiny as the other, infesting its eggs of malice and idea, plaguing the colonizer.


The darkness is consuming in the matter of a slow motion implosion.


Raging repulsion springing forth from my chest belly mouth eyes mind vomit. Tearing out my torso and skull split and explode in projectile daggers and splatters. Like an internal light switch flipped on loosening of internal throat muscle fluttering, sternocleidomastoid slacks. Quick route to the porcelain god screaming for damnation, and the funny thing is I'm running towards it, as long as I'm out of the spider infested kitchen web of spoilt cereal into and through the dark hallway tunnel towards expelled oblivion. Night way through shaded memories and canine shadows. Bathroom light switch on and vomit barely making the toilet. Surge of death and birth expelled from esophagus the toilet's crowned. Collisions of stars and meteor pathways engulf tile reveries, dust and scum swept away in the flood.


Some last bit of energy. I float up with sweat streaming off my burning body my soul is on fire. Sweaty hands grip and slide across white marble sink countertop and I look at myself in the mirror. Shirt is covered in vomit cereal and milk splattered in clumps like oatmeal and the shit stinks so I pull it all up and over my head. Arms raised I endure a searing pain like the soreness after running for (or from) your life. One's reflection within a mirror is the biggest practical joke of all. My body is a highway that I'm lost on. I must have been asleep the last time I took a trip. Brutal and ragged red slash down my chest cavity tied together with a macabre stitch job. Dried and crusted black red strings frayed rising from the wound (who will woo me now?), the haze of perdition connected the horrific scenes of sickness and confusion and I'm too afraid to look at it but there it is. I must be hollow below all that.


I see it. The truth, the way, the unattainable happiness, freedom from mind and body lost at the depths of the death sign stretched like a sports banner down my chest and the circuitry of my musical memory banks sputtered, a record being dusted off, kissed with still but dried saliva crusted at the corners of my lips, the sound building to the beginning of the end. In heaven, everything is fine sings a memory before it transcends to evanescence. Ethereal orgasms in the temporal region of the brain, somehow circuiting as in a dream demonstrating dimensions of real life metaphysical separation taking place within the concords of mind and body. This must be the absolute like sun flares scarring seething retinas searching in quiet desperation for the misery. Bliss reached then retched in the layers of death. The floor of transcendence sweltering under acid lathered chunks. Dimensions of travel I can't comprehend. Final Breath expunged sight from unhinged door frames shackled let loose the last ounce of light.

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