Tuesday, March 12, 2024

the last book I ever read (My Death by Lisa Tuttle, excerpt two)

from My Death by Lisa Tuttle:

In the jumbled, fragmented memories I carry from my childhood there are probably nearly as many dreams as images from waking life. I thought of one that might have been my earliest remembered nightmare. I was probably about four years old—I don’t think I’d started school yet—when I woke up screaming. The image I retained of the dream, the thing that had frightened me so, was an ugly, clown-like doll made of soft red- and cream-colored rubber. When you squeezed it, bulbous eyes popped out on stalks and the mouth opened in a gaping scream. As I recall it now, it was disturbingly ugly, not really an appropriate toy for a very young child, but it had been mine when I was younger, at least until I’d bitten its nose off, at which point it had been taken away from me. At the time when I had the dream I hadn’t seen it for a year or more—I don’t think I consciously remembered it until its sudden looming appearance in a dream had frightened me awake.

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