Dreams from Black Rock City

One evening, in the middle of the Black Rock Desert, two friends of mine and I climb a ladder to get a new perspective.  We meet a friendly couple sitting on a platform, swinging their feet over the edge.  I ask if they would like a dream.  The woman gladly accepts.  The man asks, "What's a dream?"

"That's up to you," I say and give him one.

"I don't get it," he says looking at his dream.  "Can I redeem this some place?"

"You tell me," I say.

"Don't worry," the woman tells me.  "He's an engineer.  I know just what I'm going to do with mine."

"An artist," the man scoffs.

We hear there is a rubber ducky, somewhere outside the city, big enough to house a jazz club.  Everyone advises we bike.  We stop to ask directions from two woman riding dragonfly bikes.  "Keep going," they say and let us take their picture.

The rubber ducky is a mirage.  He swims in a little silver pond.  We bike faster.  The rubber ducky is a chalk drawing against a white earth, a blue sky.  We pedal harder.  The rubber ducky is as big as a house, tied to the desert with thick cables. "Closed until dark," says the sign on the breast.  But the rubber ducky makes everyone joyous anyway.

Then we bike to the temple.  The temple is make of wood stencil discards from a dinosaur toy factory.  The man who built the temple is there talking about his temple.  We gather around pushing closer to him not wanting to miss a word.   I want to crawl inside his mind.  But many other people there want to crawl inside his mind ahead of me.  I give him a dream before I'm swept aside.  He slides it into his pocket without looking at it.

At night it gets cold.  I wear my velvet coat and carry my toy accordion.  Inside a fire breathing dragon train is a funk band.  We dance along side for a while.  When the pirate boat stops, we hop aboard and climb up to the deck.  I meet a pirate.  We exchange names.  I give him a dream.  He plays drums in the boat's salsa band.  We sail on the desert breeze under the arch of a dancing laser beam.

I want to be alone.  I climb down from the boat and wave goodbye to my pirate.  It is my favorite view of the city, alone in the dark, the line of lights and flames along the horizon, the wavy sounds of celebration.  I walk towards where I think my home might be.  A gigantic flower decorated with lights and music rolls up beside me, accompanied by the most beautiful song I've ever heard.  I spin and spin and spin.

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