Slavery

So when I was 19 or so, I had a nightmare. I was placed in the slave owning Americas, specifically at a slave auction. I just had one image of a black slave being strung up and tortured and then I woke up. The feelings of disgust, revulsion, sadness, and anger that I felt with that brief glimpse of a black slave being tortured spurred me to get up in the middle of the night and write about it. This is what came out.

I dreamt of torture last night. while in a deep sleep men and women mutilated at their masters feet. their eyes bulged out, falling out of sockets ropes hanging bodies too beaten to notice their families strung, hung up to dry, blood dripping off severed limbs whips and knives to make sure they wouldn’t die before their screams echoed off clouds, and their blood curdled the ground. dried red brown, cracking dry skin crack whip crack hurry up boy, dance off the ship.

I've often gone back to this poem trying to expand upon it, revise it, add to it, but I was never able to. I tried making it a part of a message against slavery, but this was simply the reflection of a dream.

Anyway, the reason that I'm bringing this up now is that I recently saw a picture that conveys the exact image and feelings that I felt in my dream.

I've been reading about William Blake and this picture showed up on his wiki page. I was kind of shocked to see it because it was so similar to the dream I had. Some poems are never finished, but I wanted to share this anyway. As I compare my poem with the image, there are so many commonalities, I would venture to guess that my subconscious had stored this image and I used it to write the poem. The eyes, the fact that his arms aren't seen, the blood on the ground, the ship. It's quite startling really. This is the second time that I've written something that is already in the collective subconscious of humanity, without me being cognitive of its existence.