Petals of Cobalt

I only wanted a dream. Next to my bed, just below its edge and close enough to touch, rested a clear glass globe the size of my head, an aquarium of sorts. The globe encased a stamen-shaped apparatus, metallic and black, from which glowing, sky-blue tendrils writhed, probing the globe’s underside, cascading from bottom to top, like so many searching, electric fingers. If I, the curious observer, touched my own finger to the globe, the swimming tendrils would gather on the spot, forsaking their search and sharing their warmth with me, tingling. Holding an open palm to the top of the globe, I could coax those incandescent, living tentacles into a single, white bolt, bright and hot, connecting me like a conduit to the beastly flower inside. In the darkness, the sphere’s luminescence coated the ceiling and cast floating black ghosts along the walls, like dreaming dancers, spellbound by the alien flower’s soprano hum. And entranced, I too danced in dreams until morning.


I want to keep watching. “Illuma Storm.” What an awesome name. The shimmering posts of electric light hurry about their eight-inch atmosphere, oblivious. So I reach down, holding my hand to the glass ball’s cool, still surface until its aimless inhabitants gather, unified in mock worship underneath. If I move my hand to the top, the blue beams draw together into a single, white streak, like lightning, like a sharp crack in the darkness. They loosen and regain their color when I hold my hand on the side, growing translucent and fuzzy. And if I glide a finger across the glass surface, they draw toward it like dew beads on a crystal balloon. I extend my body from under my dinosaur-print covers, head first, and touch my tongue to the surface, feeling the beams’ electric tingle, but tasting dust and finger prints. Tired and cold from reaching, I retreat back to the warmth of my comforter. But shifting my pillow, I can lie on my side and still see it churning. It even paints my eyelids blue when I close them.

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