My prescient experiences happened long ago,
shedding vivid spotlights on events I could not know.
Sporadic and unplanned-for, they came to me at night,
employing dreams to bring future happenings to light.
Once, thick in dreams, I woke to the ringing of the phone
and got up to answer its insistent tone.
“Miss Dykstra, this is Ludwig’s. You can come pick up your prints!”
Ready two days early? It didn’t make much sense.
I said I’d be there shortly, but then went back to bed,
hoping to fall back to sleep, but, alas, instead,
the phone began to ring again, so I got out of bed,
“Miss Dykstra? We are calling to say your dad is dead!”
In shock, I dropped the receiver, and as it hit the floor,
it began to ring again. How could it have rung more?
Puzzled, I woke up in bed. The whole time I’d been sleeping!
So I got up in the real world to stem the phone’s loud beeping.
“Miss Dykstra? This is Ludwigs.” The voice was calm and steady.
“We just called to say that your color prints are ready!”
That summer morning, a cold chill rendered me unsteady.
Again, I though it should have been two days ’til they were ready!
I drove uptown to get my prints and when I got back home,
I could hear the ringing of my telephone.
I struggled then with key in lock, but the ringing died
before I even managed to get myself inside.
I couldn’t tell who called me, for I had no means
in those days before cellphones or answering machines.
I went into the bathroom to draw myself a bath.
It would take some soaking to dispel the aftermath
of these weird occurrences. A good half hour or more
had passed before I heard the opening of my kitchen door.
It was my Mom and Sister, both of them in tears.
My dad had had a heart attack, echoing my fears.
In time, it was the end of him, though he lived four more years—
a time in which he had to learn how to shift his gears.
A large man, hale and hearty, and active his whole life,
for those four years he had to depend upon his wife
to open doors and lift things heavier than a phone,
belligerently accepting help for things once done alone.
“We tried to call you earlier, they said. Where did you go?
I’d had two calls to pick up photos, and so I told them so.”
This really did happen, exactly as described. Two sets of phone calls, the words exactly the same in the first set—one a dream, the other reality, although in the second set, I received only the first one in a dream and when I missed the second phonecall, my sister had to deliver the message herself.
Word prompts today are thick, sporadic, prescient, employ, summer and bellligerent.