Two decades passed before I came across a story that was to call back the visions. I read about a 13-year-old Alabama boy who died and came back. A large metal trailer he was riding in flipped over and landed on his head. He died for 15 minutes. He was resuscitated, but remained comatose and presumed brain dead. His parents signed papers to donate his healthy organs. As he was being removed from life support, he found to be breathing on his own. Shortly after, he came to with almost perfect recollection. He knew he had died and gone to a place where he “was in an open field walking straight.” I believe I’ve been to this same field.
The news story has prompted my own recollection. That was the same field I had visited in my childhood. I fixated on remembering more. That night as I tried to sleep, I returned there. The barren landscape and its dusty haze were just the same as I had known it, only this time there was a shadowy figure just beyond the wall of cinders and sand. Several attempts to get close were blundered. It seemed the more I wanted to know, the less I was able to make out. The wind and sand grew more virulent. But I felt the figure lingering there, waiting for me.
Every night, when sleep beckoned, I would return to the same beige mist enshrouding the hanging specter. Every night the same wind and sand enveloped me.