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Dream Quest One Third Writing Prize Winner
Summer 2008
John A. Vikara
Lake Ariel, Pennsylvania - USA


          Darkness. Darkness surrounds me. Darkness comforts me as I float suspended in my labyrinth. I cannot breathe. I need not breathe. I cannot see. I need not see. I grasp my body and hug for I am alone and the only one I can depend on, so it seems. Yet, there is an emotional attachment as I feel a presence surrounding and protecting me. There is something more to come, something I can’t comprehend but can feel within. This will not be my permanent resting place. Yes, there is something more to come.


I grow restless and I find that I can move, only by a fraction or two at first. There are muffled sounds vibrating from somewhere outside my environment. Each day I find I have learned something, something for survival or significant to my future. It is an education of heredity, not of instruction. Soon I stretch and push and feel resistance to my struggle. I can’t comprehend time but I know I have all but outlived these


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surroundings. That something more to come is near.


The walls that hold me begin to tremble. There is a pressure below. I am being forced upward but I refuse to go. It’s too peaceful here. I want to stay. Everything I need is here. I’m safe and I’m comfortable. Please. I don’t want to go.


The pressure is irresistible. I’m not strong enough to continue the struggle. I slowly ascend the path, fighting, kicking as I’m pushed along. The walls begin to yield. The force is too great and my impedance is quashed.


A great bright flash blinds me. Now I must see. But I close my eyes, trying desperately to retrieve the comfort of darkness. It’s not the same. There is no floating sensation. No walls. I become aware of a new function I must perform, one I’ve never experienced before. There is a compelling force inside of me. I try desperately to relieve the stress and I become frightened. There is a sharp stinging pain and suddenly the energy bursts from within. It is the first time ever that I hear a clear vibrant sound. It is loud and alarming. It’s piercing and it’s coming from me. The pressure is gone. There is a new substance pumping about my body. I continue to wail as I’m engulfed in an atmosphere of sweet air. Now I must breathe. I try to


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open my eyes slightly and find that the brilliant light is still there. In time, the light becomes warm and comforting and is as satisfying as the darkness had once been. I suddenly know everything there is to know about this new experience. The light is called the sun. And I am called the Earth. I know now that I and the sun and my brothers and sisters called planets and stars are the beginning of what will be eternity, born of the union of God and Mother Nature. We will find we must live in harmony and balance, each attracting and repelling just enough to keep us where we can survive.


          Time has become infinite and after some adjustments and refinements the miracle of birth will occur countless billions and trillions of times upon my surface. The pain, the fear, the epiphany and the joy will triumph. I will be populated at first with commingled species of animals before hosting an array of human brothers and sisters. I will provide them with the needs for their existence and they, in turn, must take care of me. But the only way to survival and to have a reason for continued birth is for those brothers and sisters to also learn to live in harmony and balance for that infinity.

By John A. Vikara