Dream of:28 July 1988 "The Great Equalizer"
I was standing in front of the Grace Street House (the House in New Boston where Birdie lived in the late 1960s). Stepping back from the house so I could have a better look at it, I reflected that I had never been in any part of the house except the front room. Although I had never thought much about the house, I now realized it was rather attractive. Someone had been working on the house, painting the front yellow and another color.
I had also never realized just how large the house was – it had three stories. Something quite unusual about the top story – which appeared to consist of one spacious room – caught my attention. I realized the roof for the top floor extended out from the house, apparently over the entire town. It was a bit like a dome in an indoor stadium. But this dome not only covered the house, but the entire town. Thus if someone were to climb through the ceiling of the top floor of the house, he or she would be atop the roof which covered the town.
Noticing that the top floor had some windows, I tried to see through them from where I was standing, but they were too far away. The only thing I could descry was a shelf with some objects sitting on it.
When a young fellow walked up and spoke with me, it took me a few minutes to realize he was Birdie's brother. I had never spoken with him before, but he seemed quite genial. As we talked, he asked me what "point one" meant. I replied, "Point zero one percent alcoholic content."
We talked more, but I didn't pay much attention to him. He began relating a little story about a fishing trip which he and another person had taken. Apparently they had seen some guns and a rifle floating down the creek. Finally a man carrying a gun had come running down the creek (the water wasn't deep), threatening to shoot them. It sounded like a strange story.
As I listened, I began walking, until finally I walked right into the house. I strolled through the front room and back into the interior of the house, until I encountered a man who was a lawyer, and who was the boyfriend of Birdie's mother. It seemed odd to me that Birdie's mother would be dating a lawyer, but he looked like a decent character. We began a conversation, and he brought up the law that had been involved in an incident which had occurred when I had lived in Ohio many years before. I informed him that I hadn't been a lawyer at that time, and thus I knew little about the law involved in the particular incident.
When the lawyer finally disappeared into the labyrinthine house, I returned to the front room, where I noticed someone emerging from the shadows. It took me a moment to realize that the old and tottering man stepping from the darkness was Birdie's father, Bishop. I remembered that I used to have hard feelings toward Bishop. But when he walked up to me, I was glad to seem him.
He was so different from the way I remembered him. He had once seemed strong and violent to me, but now he was just a decrepit old man. Once I had even been afraid of him, but now I realized there was never any need to worry about such things – because God was the great equalizer. God would finally take care of everything. I thought about how foolish it was to think of doing things oneself, when God had such power to make one old, to make one die. With my meager powers I worried about accomplishing things in this life, and finally God took care of everything. The thoughts made me so emotional, I began crying. But I felt at ease at the same time.
Bishop and I threw our arms around each other. Although I held him in my arms for quite a long while, he didn't seem to mind. He even seemed a bit distracted, as if he might already be somewhat senile. When I released him, he sat back down on the couch. As I stood in front of him, I crossed my arms and held onto his hands. When he finally stood back up, he started to pick up an orange bumble bee or wasp (probably five centimeters long) lying on the floor. I cautioned him that I wouldn't pick up something like that. At that moment Birdie entered the room, visibly anxious to pass on through. When she walked out to the front porch, I stayed only a moment longer with Bishop, then followed her. When I stepped outside, Birdie was already standing by the car. As I hurried down the porch steps toward her, I teetered, missed a step and almost fell. I recalled that earlier in the day I had drunk some booze and had smoked a marijuana joint. I knew I would probably have to tell Birdie about it.
As soon as I reached Birdie, I stopped and looked at her dark black hair. It seemed that there was something evil or ugly about her. But I didn't dwell on it, because once again, I reflected how God was the great equalizer. There was no point in becoming upset with anything having to do with Birdie.
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