When I was in fourth grade I first had an experience while sleeping that happened several times in the next years after that. It became such a familiar experience I was no longer surprised by it and eventually it stopt. I don’t want to call it a dream or a nightmare. I think of it as something different from either. In the experience, I was aware of being asleep. I could sense, coming toward me, a bank of rolling clouds. These clouds seemed to have more substance than mere water vapor, and they had a different color. They were very dark clouds: dark browns – nearly black, dark grays, and, of course, black. They were roiling towards me and over me. The first time, I was terrified. I was totally insignificant. They seemed as if they would suffocate me, but never did. Gradually, as this experience happened over and over, I became used to them. Eventually, they brought a kind of comfort. I didn’t even notice when they stopt coming. I could not tell if there was any correspondence between the appearance of the clouds and any outward events in my life. It seemed reasonable for there to be some cause and effect, but I couldn’t find any. They seemed random, then they stopt. I never spoke to anyone about them. Dreams were not a subject of conversation with anyone I knew. Actually, in my home, there were no conversations. Our mother controlled whatever we spoke about and, of course, passed judgment, so it was simpler not to speak. Next to our farm house was a hay meadow and a pasture that rose up a hill away from the house. In the pasture, on top of the hill, one could see for several miles in several different directions. Up there, I also felt tiny and insignificant, but there was a difference. Up there, with the sky and distance all around, I felt glorious! I didn’t feel powerful or powerless. I felt as if I was a small, valuable part of something grand and far greater than myself. I still feel that way much of the time.