IN THE MOUNTAINS OF FIRE
By Dolores J. Nurss
Volume 1: Welcome to the Charadoc!
I feel that I have lived
through/dreamed the flood of wounded overwhelming the infirmary, within those
years when I became systematic about recording dreams–but I’m afraid that my early
system left much to be desired! I paid
no attention to external dates or day-residue, concentrating only on capturing
story material. I cannot confirm
I do remember, in the early days of
our marriage, my husband taking EMT training, and talking about it when he got
home, telling me about the priorities in managing catastrophe: staunching
bleeding came in second only to restoring respiration. How could it not weave into my dreams? So I would probably place my dream around
then, that first year wed, 1985.
I had a lot of traumatic childhood
material to deal with in those days. The
first step in becoming a fully functional helpmate was to stop the gush of all
those soul-wounds draining my energy—I could take care of the details
later. Thank heavens I married a patient
I wrote Cici’s thoughts.
I sat at the keyboard, trying to remember the exact feel of what it meant to be
Jonathan in the terrible days of the core dream, these words flowed through,
and it all came back, in more detail than I cared for, but I had to record them
anyway, I had to not let the dream slip away in vain. Too much suffering went into it for it to
mean nothing at all. He might long to
forget, but I must not—my
duty requires that I not, ever, forget.
I am no Til debriefer, chemically cushioned to bear it. I must take it all in with my nerves as bare
as a clean sheet of paper in the typewriter.
maybe it does come to me cushioned, comparatively speaking, in that fuzziness
into which the dreams can lapse on waking.
Oh thank God for that annoying, benevolent fade, for how could I bear it
if I recalled it all too clearly, in its first, ice-sharp clarity, for more
than the minutes it takes to mumble into my bedside recorder!
didn't specifically dream of the clean-up.
But it would be a part of Deirdre's reality. Doctors in hospitals might leave all of that
to others, but she was not only a medic, but a slave.
dreamed of Cici visiting a relative in an insane asylum. More on that much, much later.
invented the makeshift mass, consistent with later details. I also invented the various sleepy thoughts
of different people, wafting through Deirdre’s drowsing mind. I did not, however, invent the awareness of
snoring while one sleeps; that much I’ve lived.