I used to have this recurring dream where dinosaurs were trying to kill me. I was at the great green house of my grandparents, a place attributed to happy childhood memories of being adequately dirty and endlessly barefoot. A house that held most of my precious memories, also held something visceral and dark. A place that, in the light of day encouraged all of the goodness of homemade cookies and burning wood in the fire. How even on a windless day, there always seemed to be a cool breeze that pushed through the kitchen window, making the curtain dance with lunacy. The toy room held old fur-collared coats and a tin of antique buttons that I would finger through with the delicacy of one handling glass. In the dark though, the house shifted and settled into a coldness that seemed otherworldly. It felt as if the house had eyes, and the pleasantries of cookies plumping in the oven were now overwrought by the cold and daunting smell of must and fear.
It was always there - at that anciently familial house - that the typically peaceful herbivore of a dinosaur would turn and try to snatch me and eat me up. I was always on the front lawn facing the barn bank. The one I had raced down innumerable times on that red Radio Flyer wagon. I would see this Brachiosaurus and then spread my arms and will myself to fly, knowing that flight was not something that I possessed the ability to do. I just needed to get above the tops of the trees, where it couldn't reach me. I flew clumsily and faltered, but always managed to get just high enough to escape, yet close enough still to feel the breath of the beast at my back.
The old family house and the dinosaur represent what is ancient, the trespasses of my family line, the darkness. I know the curse of Adam and the manner in which is has attached to my family. While the faces of the generations have changed, the brokenness has been recycled through time. Decades later, I am dealing with the trauma of that same curse. While I know the brutality of what my heritage holds, I also know that part of the trick is in the agenda staying hidden. While my life hasn't always blossomed with freedom, I have always managed to escape by some supernatural ability. I can look back and see where faults lie, where lies were believed, where brokenness was birthed, and I can also see that while I may feel the hot breath against my back, it is always behind me.