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Dreamed 1991/3/25 by Chris Wayan

I'm working in the neglect garden of our new house. We're trying to clear and replant it.

Should I pull this dead-looking fern or not?

Then it starts talking to me! The voice is faint and I can't make it out. Oh. No wonder. Ferns speak German. In a girl's voice, it murmurs "Yes, yes, the fern speaks."

Odd, though--its voice seems to be coming from beyond the lemon tree. "Ja, ja, die fernsprechen." Finally I realize it's actually a neighbor, talking on the phone to Germany. Fern-sprechen = far-speaker. "Yeah, yeah, the telephone..." A healthy, but taciturn, fern

But the fern didn't sprech. It was her. It's not a speaking fern. It's a dry, DEAD fern. I look hard at it; once I'm sure it really was an illusion, not a thinking being, I tear the dead fern out and crumble it as mulch.

A big patch of soil is all that's left.

I feel guilty. Murderer!

No. Gardener. Clearer. Shiva!

Now there's room for something new to grow. Not a fake fernsprechen.

And how many more fake voices do I still need to tear out?

LISTS AND LINKS: ferns - dream humor - puns - phones - languages - death - off with the old, on with the new: rebirth and reincarnation

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