Excerpt from upcoming book *Dreaming Naledi*



Sleep Child. I pray you sleep. Rest where lucidity finds you no more. I pray you sleep, just long enough to find peace. May the gods that torment you, give you peace and a sound mind. 

See the thing about dreams was that, they were either a series of thoughts or a science of the mind. Sensations occurring in a person’s subconscious, like images when they slept. An indulgent of pleasantries. Mediums, would call it, a distraction from the present. Dreams were either cherished aspirations, ambitions of a perfect ideal or an unknown world that came off as real as touch. But for Naledi – dreams were an experience. An experience closer to feeling, rather than breathing. A vivid awareness, astral projections and lucid performances that would torment her at night. A war between dark and light.

Observations, she would then call them. Mere observations.

Tonight, she would observe even though she would be the one being observed. Naledi was acutely aware of all that was about to unfold. She had seen it as clearly as she’d predicted her father’s death. That afternoon, her father – the monarch of the Gold had come home from battle against the Easterns, wounded by the invasion of an arrow to his abdomen. He had asked for his daughter as soon as he’d been mounted off his horse. He had asked for her. Word of his injury had erupted amongst all the clans of the South. No one could fathom how the Chief and keeper of the Gold could not harness his healing and escape death once more like he’d been known to do for many years. Ancient elders believed that the power of the Gold came with gifts of immortality that could be channelled when death called. For years, many have believed that the late Chief Senza Zwane could do the unfathomable. They deemed him greater than the legendary King Shaka. In battle, they knew Chief Senza would find favour, because well – He always did. They believed his undefeated victories in war and the conquering of lands were compliments of the Golden stone. As keeper, he ruled the Golden stone like an invisible phenomenon.

But then, suddenly as real as daylight – there he was that one afternoon, bleeding through a wound, gushing out so much red that death was inevitable. His injuries promising an end, just like his young, lithe and mentally tormented daughter had predicted months before. He’d asked for his daughter with careful desperation. He would not frighten her although she knew – he knew – she was smart enough to understand what was happening to him. He’d asked for her and his final words came hard with struggle as he looked into his daughter’s wide brown eyes, filled with tears.

Sleep Child. I pray you sleep. Rest where lucidity finds you no more.  And when you wake, marry or flee Child. Marry or flee.



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