From Dreams in Cabins

Four men sat in the back two seats of a beat up old station wagon, three white and one, quivering eyes and desperate twitching frown, was a large black man. A young boy, six or so, with bruises across his face held shotgun and his uncle was behind the wheel. They drove slowly around the same block.

“Is ‘is him, boy?” asked one of the men in the back seat, grabbing the black guy by the collar and jerking him forward. The black man pulled away defiantly but the other men int he back just laughed, their eyes full of anticipation, wide-eyed and waiting for their fun.

The boy looked back at the man he didn’t recognize and then turned his head down.

“You remember what we went over, son, all you have to do is say the words.” His uncle pulled the car over to the side of the road and put his hand on the boy’s shoulder. “He ain’t gone hurtcha no more,” shaking his head slowly and deliberately while his eyes stayed straight and fixed, almost removed from the swaying of the rest of his head.

The boy, frightened by the whole situation, nodded slightly and, as his heart fell down into his gut, left his head follow it.

“No need to hang yer head in shame no more, boy,” one of the men in the back shouted as they piled out of the car, pushing the black one out of the car and into the street. They kicked him a few times as they pulled him from the foot of the car and up over a curb and into a house on the block.

Nothing happened for about an hour, the boy and his uncle stayed in the car, the uncle looking into his mirrors every now and then, chewing on an unlit cigar, the boy kept his head down but tried to look behind them at the house through the corner of his eye.

Eventually he heard a door swing open and the other men pulling their prisoner from out of the house, having dressed him up in a white hood and a sheet for a robe. The boy looked up over the back of his seat and watched as they lit a match that set a giant cross on alight. The black man didn’t struggle much, but as they turned him around and put him up on a pedestal near the cross and handcuffed him too it, the boy could see straight into his eyes and couldn’t help but watch as the flames reflecting in the white and brown and black crawled up the man’s leg and he screamed out….

Then I woke up from my dream, all too vivid to forget and I just layed in my West Virginia cabin bed that I was staying at for the weekend, layed there for a good half an hour and wondered where that could have come from…

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