I Dreamt of the Valkyrie
The night is temperate and lovely. I gaze up at the inky black sky pockmarked and shimmering with stars.
As if compelled by an obsession to search for something I’d lost, I cannot take my eyes off it. The velvety sky is beguiling. With my head tilted back and cocked to one side, I scan the dark ceiling of the universe for a favorite constellation, Orion or Pleiades, perhaps, or the occasional shooting star, but what I see appear against the fluid darkness is neither.
Miraculously, a line of fire begins to burn against the dark backdrop of the sky and soon takes the shape of a mighty horse and rider, fully outlined in fire and galloping as the flames flicker and jump along its back.
“Valkyrie,” I think to myself in stunned silence, “it’s a Valkyrie”.
My breath catches, holds and threatens to cease before I remind myself to draw another. I remember long ago, I promised myself if I ever saw a fiery Valkyrie in the night sky, then I would know, without any remaining doubt, that God, in fact, existed. Faith would finally be rewarded, doubt vanquished once and for all.
Here was my “burning bush”.
I wonder, momentarily, how I know what I’m seeing is a Valkyrie, since I can’t say I’ve ever actually seen one, nor could I call to mind the image of what the ancient figure is supposed to look like, but I’m certain this fiery horse is the mythical Norse Goddess of Fate called forth in battle to choose the fallen.
I watch the galloping enigma, frozen in anxious amazement until it dawns on me to get some kind of proof of what I’m seeing. I can hardly believe it myself so how could I expect anyone else to believe me? I fumble for my cell phone, finally getting the video program switched on I raise it, tap record just as the horse and rider begins to fade.
Next, as if being projected onto an ebony movie screen, the large head of a pure white unicorn appears against the dark backdrop of the heavens and begins to speak in a commanding voice. The voice is ambiguous in gender, neither male nor female, but is filled with compassion, authority and pure love.
I am in shock, I fall to my knees and begin to weep.
The Unicorn is not angry, but stern and the beautiful creature is chiding ‘us’ as if we were errant children who must find a way to mend the mess we’ve made of our world.
The mystical creature does not introduce itself as God, but I instinctively know it can be no other presence come in the form of this beautiful white Unicorn and I am blissfully dumbfound as I watch this creature speak.
Then, beside the image of the beautiful Unicorn, a crude, earthen-like statue of a religious figurine appears in the night sky. My attention is drawn to it as it sits upon a shelf. Suddenly, it’s smashed and crumbles into nothing.
My sister, who has been standing nearby turns to me and says knowingly, “See? There are to be no idols.”
By now, most of the blood has run down from inside my arms and they feel like wooden stumps propping my phone up to record the miraculous scene playing out over my head then, without warning, everything fades and the night sky is again, dotted only with stars and distant planets.
People are milling about around me, murmuring to themselves or each other in hushed amazement. Some are confused and some frightened to the edge of hysteria.
I am speechless and remain rooted to the ground where I had earlier fallen while tears continue to stream down my cheeks.
The next day, many people around the world reported seeing what most had agreed was God take the form of a white Unicorn to admonish his children and to say, “Get it together”. Those who had not witnessed the event for various reasons whether they had been sleeping or otherwise occupied indoors found it farfetched and suspicious. And of these people, most did not trust the Unicorn messenger to have anything to do with God at all. In their minds, this was not at all how God would appear.
Rolling toward the nightstand I check the clock, the digital display reads 4:01 am.
In the past few years, it has not been uncommon for me to find myself awake at 3:00 or 4:00 am on some mornings and to puzzle over it as my mind clicks into gear and leap frogs through various worries or events of the days past until I surrender and rise into the small hours of the morning.
What is much less common, is to be wide awake at 4:00 am with a full and vibrant accounting of the dream I’d just been having, complete in detail, sequence and color, as if I’d just strolled out of a movie theater.
As I lay awake recounting the story in my head, I feel as if I’ve just returned from some other plane of existence. Rifling my memory for the images I’d vividly seen in my dream, I wonder about the symbology and meaning within the story my subconscious was playing out.
Unable to regain sleep, I reach for my phone on the nightstand. I am almost tempted to click the icon of the photos folder to check for any evidence of the Valkyrie and the Unicorn there, but instead, I remind myself it was only a dream. I click on my internet browser, and look up the mythical symbology of the Unicorn and the pagan myth of the Valkyries.
What I find does not surprise me. The Valkyrie is the mythical pagan goddess of fate who chooses the fallen during battle, whereas, the Unicorn symbolizes purity and grace.
As I finally fall back into sleep, I have set my intention to remember the details of my dream and so I might fully understand its message when I wake again in a few hours.
If you enjoyed this story, would you recommend it to others?
S Lynn Knight, 2017