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  • Writer's pictureBurnt Breakfast

Vanquishing Ghosts from JavaScript Dreams | By Nikki Bausch

Updated: Dec 19, 2020

In my dreams,

Are buildings stolen from ${Vienna},

Background programs running,

Like museum tourGuide monologues,

While rotting, claw like hands reach up my covers,

At the end of my bed,

Var Intruders = “lostSpirits lingering”,

Caught in infinite loops of ${despair},

I need to run tests,

It(“should be less crowded in this room,”, function(){

Let personinThisRoom = Number(1),

assert.strictEqual (personinThisRoom, 1)};

Console.log(`It’s 2020, your time on Earth has ended. Leave me be! `);

Lucid, I’m back,

Now, apparently var dreamSetting = “cruise ship.”

“We saw these architectural masterpieces,”

Says the automated voice of the tourGuide,

Who I see now has no face,

She’s come with me from the other dream scene,

Carrying on the tour without the exhibit,

“And we had to have them.”

The dancing buildings of ${Prague} float past,

Surrounded by Biedermeier buildings from ${Vienna}.

Drowsily, I remark that she’s brought the exhibit on the boat,

Everyone else in the tour group shushes me.

I sulk, “But this is my dream?”

I just want to find the ${pool},

Soak up some sun on the ${deck}.

No lostSpirits anymore,

Yet, I found a variable I forgot to declare—lostPlans—

Which continue to haunt me,

And throw errors in my nightly dream program.


Nikki Bausch is from St. Louis, Missouri. Prior to the pandemic, she was completing her masters in German studies at the University of Vienna. Her written work has appeared in UM--St. Louis's Litmag, The Honest Ulsterman, Perhappened, Anti-Heroin Chic, and is forthcoming in Cauldron Anthology. She has been working on a photography project involving documentation of temporary graves in Austria, Czechia, and Germany. She also writes in German and translates from Czech to English. She is an alumna of the U.S. Teaching Assistantship Program in Austria overseen by the Austrian-American Cultural Commission and Fulbright, and a Rotary Youth alumna. She has also lived and conducted research projects in Czechia. She tweets as @ArcanaLili and her visual art can be found on Instagram under @ArcanaArdatlili. 

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