Peripheral Dream Sequence
I have a dream
in which my father is the villain.
let me start over.
I have a dream in which
I am the villain
but my father made me,
which makes him the villain
too. The dream
is like a car crash in my
peripheral vision, a sequence
of grinding metal and rubber
and flame when he asks me, in a fury,
are these your drugs? and I laugh
because the drug in question
is my own hot blood,
viscous and unforgiving on my hands.
My mother storms into my childhood bedroom;
she tells me my father
isn’t real. Not that he doesn’t exist,
but that he’s trying not to. He’s trying to escape his own mess.
He’s trying to escape
the drug of settling for less,
so easily swallowed in your youth
which is also my youth which
is also this dream sequence
in which my father
is the villain but I am
too and so is my mother
because despite the doped-up rush
of licking our wounds over the years,
we can’t help but make each other this way.
No, wait, let me start over;
memory, that’s the villain.
Daniel Brennan (he/him) is a queer writer from NYC, who spent his childhood in the lush Blue Ridge Mountains of Pennsylvania with his many siblings and an ongoing menagerie of pets. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Passengers Journal, Garfield Lake Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Sky Island Journal, and ONE ART, among others.