The China Shop

Is it possible to be God and conscious? If people give you power, is it even possible for you to be awake? Explore these questions in this story.

photo from Pexels by artist Maria Orlova

join my mailing list

| connect - share - support |

   Joshua Brown

The holidays were upon us, there were no more people that cared about them though. It was almost like a murky swampland of emotional discharacterization. People just didn't get political anymore. Or did they? I didn't care at least and my mind was fading away into a swampland of emotional discharacterization.

My mind was flitting away.

The birds were concerned.

The holy land was discharged, no longer were any of those stupid relics necessary, nor were the priests and True Believers necessary. But this time we were not going to gain power. We were going to fade away into a dream state, an unconsciousness of the patriarchal revenge.

Except there was no fucking revenge, it was just the return of nature and choice.

I woke up and there seemed to be no birds anywhere in sight. I could hear a faint chirping but it was so faint, that I almost imagined it was merely an artifact in my mind, a leftover from some incessant message from some past experience, that I was supposed to remember, at least for a time.

There were candy canes littered everywhere when I opened my eyes and looked upon that land. The ground could be seen, but there were millions of candy canes, various in shape and size, none bigger than you could grasp firmly in your hand, but I was still surprised at this, aha, look it's so crazy, so many fucking candy canes!

I had been laying in the middle of the street, either side of me there were three lanes. But there were no cars. No birds, no cars. My mind wandered into the buildings. Now those were busy. People were everywhere near the buildings. But they were silent. Wandering about in some hurriedly happy fashion but verbally mute as if there were some dangerous monster nearby that might overhear and be caused to rise to angry violence.

On top of all of the buildings were men with guns. I could count just from where I stood in the middle of this strange fever dream of car-less, bird-less holiday mimery, 70ish soldiers stationed on top of buildings in varying degrees of attention to the silent holiday shoppers. They were all dressed in black, the soldiers that is, not the holiday shoppers.

One of the soldiers fell off of a building and from where I now stood, there was an audible gasp, proving that there was no problem with my ears, merely that the collective choice to remain silent was universal, only being broken in response to this emergency in which a heavily armed man or woman fell from a high station and... oh god, that sound... I don't even want to describe it, it was traumatic enough for me and those around to experience.

Immediately there was a giant bull that came crashing up the road, maintaining perfect alignment to the lanes, but so large that his hooves crossed over on the farthest of the three lanes on the west side of the road. I couldn't understand what was happening, the buildings obstructed my view and the sudden appearance of a large untethered animal careening in my... well our... direction was enough to freeze me from even the smallest of movements.

The bull wasn't strange in sight, other than his proportion to the world around me, including myself. If I were to guess his height to his shoulders, I should imagine at least a good 20 feet off the ground a rider would find themselves were they to try to ride this strangely straight travelling beast. But other than that his skin and hooves and overall appearance was, bullish.

Everything happened so fast from there. Here's what I remember seeing.

The bull approached quickly without looking to the right or left.

When the bull reached the location of the... not alive... soldier, it stopped on a dime, turned directly towards the soldier as if choreographed with a precision foot pattern, stomped and then bucked, swept its horns.

Now this part is where I couldn't tell what was happening.

The white horns on the bull started to glow orangish, but if I'm honest, I didn't really understand what was happening and my mind might have just switched from gold to orange because, briefly, I did think the horns turned gold, but as the bull kept sweeping its horns, I noticed each time that the horns grew and finally as if some witchcraft magic was complete, the bull immediately stopped moving completely, head held alert, no twitches, no balancing, no movement at all.

Then, water began to spring out of the right horn. 

The bull was very tall already, and the horns had grown nearly twice in size, but the springing water was also very powerful in its eruption into the sky, I might imagine that the water was flowing maybe another 30 feet into the sky, altogether maybe 70 feet, but it was hard to tell because I was still a good 100 yards from were all this was happening.

As the water came down, the candy canes began to melt away near where the bull was now stationed, red streaks billowed out from around him, there was a slight decline, so the water didn't flow towards me at all, but the street and sidewalk from the direction that the bull had come turned more and more red as the water flowed, quickly drawn away by gravity.

Speaking of that direction, now I could see coming my way was a troop of about 50 men wearing the colors of white and forest green, in the center lane that the bull had just come down. All of them were carrying flags: a white flag with a simple evergreen tree on it and the simply printed words "An Appeal to Heaven."

image generated by DALL-E 3

These men were not marching but they seemed to be generally in order, at least they didn't seem to be disheveled, and there was some sense to them as if they were going somewhere, not just lost and wandering. But when they reached the fallen soldier, they began to disperse. At first I thought it was random but as I continued watching, I noticed that the men seemed to follow a pattern, some went in the buildings and as others moved on, then they came out again, like a complicated game of frog-jumping. 

The soldiers on the roof were focused on the bull and the men with the flags seemed to be invisible to the soldiers. But the holiday mimes, the silent shoppers, seemed to be assisting the flag men, holding doors for them, giving them space to travel uninterrupted and some even gave them a subtle nod.

There was about 10 of the flag men that walked back into the buildings being flooded with the water, they seemed to ignore the water and its red stain. The soldier just lay there, being soaked in the water flowing around their body, but only 15 minutes since this whole ordeal began, and in the shadow of the stationary bull with water flowing from its horn, while the revolutionaries cleared businesses and soldiers stood distracted, I watched a great lightning strike from heaven, directly into the fallen soldier.

Immediately there was fire all around, and although I was too far away, nor did I want to approach any closer than I already was to this great commotion, I did notice that the body itself was consumed by fire almost immediately, there was no smoke, but their was a clear steam that came up as the water was evaporated by the intensely hot fire.

No one moved at the lightning strike, not the bull, not the soldiers, but the flag men did seem to adjust their patterns in some subtle way, instead of dancing in and out of the adjacent businesses, they seemed to start mostly just pretending to go inside and immediately stepping back out of the doors, then I noticed one of them hand his flag to a silent holiday shopper strip to just his long johns and retook his flag now just dressed in a simple beige base layer.

A woman came out of one of the shops, she was dressed in an all black dress, wearing a black head covering that was glittering. She picked up the "uniform" that the flag man had just undressed from, she dramatically held it above her head and then smacked it onto the ground once and then... ate it. Like literally, dude. She shoved it into her mouth.

Immediately her eyes became rays of light, lasers piercing through everything she looked at. All the silent shoppers, once again, as if choreographed, this time fell to the ground as if on queue, and the woman in black closed her eyes, the laser being stopped momentarily and turned towards the bull, opening her eyes and the bull being pierced through just behind its front shoulders.

The water began to turn deep blue, unabated by this strange and wild turn of events. Then it turned a cloudy white. Then it turned to snow. 

photo from Pexels by artist Yan Krukau

Then, and during this whole time, I want to reiterate, no one had ever regarded me as being a participant or observer, but suddenly the flagmen, all at once and in an intimidating fashion all paused at a doorway near the laser eyed woman then turned directly towards me!

They held their flags up high, shouted "FOR CHRISTMAS" and all of the mimes stood back up and began to yell as if possessed by some demented fear and the flag men began to march, this time a real march, not some amble or collective walk, but an actual formation, directly towards me.

The woman continued staring at the bull, the snow filling the air, now floating all around, covering up the road, the candy canes, the buildings, everything getting covered in a white blanket.

The soldiers, still distracted by this grand bull, one by one fell off the buildings and there was some dramatic moment at which the occurrence of everything all at once began to make me question what was happening, but I dared not move, there was no way that any of this was real, there was no way that any of this was real, there was no way that any of this was real...

I looked down at myself, just to check my own existence and I too was dressed in a billowing black tunic, black gloves and leggings, and in my hand was a large candy cane branch, green leaves at the ends of each of the three smaller twigs at the end of this red and white striped wand.

The flag men were still marching toward me, the mimes were no longer silent, and now, just 30 seconds after each soldier had fallen, lightning began to strike, almost in step with the flag men's march. Sixty-nine strikes, totaled together with the first, seventy. Snow now covered everything. The woman in black closed her eyes and looked straight into the sky, opening them again to laser towards heaven.

The bull fell over, it's horns shattering with a terrible glass clattering. It's body lay there limp, its horns destroyed, the water stopped, the snow continued to fall for a short time yet, but as the glass shards finished their ringing, the lightning finished its thunderous claps, the mimes became silent again and the flag men marched right through me as if I didn't exist, crossing the road and taking over the other side of the street in some determined posture.

Then all went still.

I could still see the laser eyes were alive, I could see the breath of the woman, the mimes, the flag-men. And there was still a bit of steam coming from the bulls body. But all of them stood still and silent.

Did I dare to explore this situation? I was mostly curious about what happened to those soldiers.

I finally moved, aware but unconcerned that those in this world might notice me, not gonna lie, I was mostly worried about the laser eyes and what they could do to me.

I walked over to see the closest site where a soldier had fallen, I approached only to find a ring of exposed concrete, not a single evidence that the soldier had fallen there except for the missing snow and dry concrete. There was no discoloration, no smell, nothing. Even the concrete itself was untouched by the lightning, no blackened rings or flash points. 

Then the mimes began to move again, this time more hurriedly and happily, and in the bustle of it all I caught a glimpse of the actors get ferried away, but so very briefly. The woman closed her eyes, the flag-men retreated their flags and dispersed into the crowd, and a large rolling platform emerged from one of the nearby alleys and just as if it was some normal thing, the bull was hoisted by some 20+ men up and onto the platform then was disappeared into the hustle and bustle of the area.

It was then that I noticed there were birds.

Then there were cars.

#story #dream #vision #morality #metaphor #absurd #weird #fiction #prophecy


Last Post - Behind the Store | Recent Poems | Alphabetical Poems


📅 Written December 3, 2023

📍 Written in Aurora, Colorado at Joshua's home along Sand Creek



Invoking Him in the prophetic visions and writings of a "mere mortal" is a temptation that many would shy away from, mostly because in the culture of today, we often defer to institutions and power-holding hierarchies. 

But God doesn't exist outside of you. You. Me.

Everytime we invoke God, we are pre-supposing that the listener is capable of wrapping their minds around the idea and essence of God, otherwise it would be insane to even mention His name.

This is why when I tell you that God Himself gave me this vision and prophecy, there is no pride in that, for the humility is that YOU can understand the dream, I believe in YOU as a listener to hear and to see the words that God gave me. It would be incredibly dangerous for me to take the name of God in vain.

Thank YOU for reading. You survived, that's incredible. ❤️

Please consider donating, this page lists all the different ways you can give.