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When I Sleep

Last night I dreamt that I was falling
Headfirst from an Air Force jet
Plummeting toward earth
No parachute
Falling faster than the wind
Ripping off my skin
Exposing every single part of me
Every part

To the point of...

And I woke up
Soaking wet, panicked 
Gasping for breath
Arms stretched in the air
Feet resting on the headboard

When I sleep
I sleep upside down
To know that I am grounded
My soles rooted in reality
No matter where the nightmares take me

Last week I dreamt that I was being chased
Down a sliver of paved blacktop road
Surrounded by the desert sand 
Closing in on me as I ran
Slowing my momentum
Swallowing me down whole
Up to my neck
Quicksand
I could not move
Paralyzed

Scared
Determined

I will not die over here
I will make it back
America is my home
Not Iraq


I fought back
Trained for combat
Kicking in my dreams
Kicking in my bed
With as much force possible
Jamming my toe into the headboard
Until I broke free of the sand
Broke free of the dream
And I woke up screaming from the pain
Fear pumping through my veins

Eyes opened
I saw the ceiling
And I knew that it was a dream only

When I sleep
I sleep upside down
Feet resting on the headboard
To know that I am grounded
My soles rooted in reality
No matter where the nightmares take me

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