Thursday, January 31, 2008

What Secrets About Us in the Dreams We Dream

    Recently I dreamed that snow had fallen in such abundance that it packed itself hard and high against our garage door. In my subconscious, I stood there shivering in nightgown and shoe boots and had a major anxiety attack, for there was no way in Hades I could get the car out, and I was due at Riverview High School at seven. I awoke then and with relief realized that not only was it a dream, but a scene dredged from somewhere in my distant past, for the garage depicted in the dream was from our house on Eton Drive. We moved from Eton twenty-two years ago, and as for being due at Riverview at seven, I haven't taught there since 1978.

    Another time in a dream, I saw myself approach an immense cauldron that bubbled and boiled and sputtered over an open fire. When I peered over the great pot's edge, I saw that there were little people walking around inside at the bottom, knee-deep in a thick, brownish soup. They were wearing loin cloths and banging bongo drums and were talking and laughing together, in no apparent distress. Upon awaking, I didn't remember the dream, but arose and went about my normal morning routine. It was not until later that day, at an odd moment, that it unraveled itself in all its vividness in my conscious mind.

    Without half trying, I could relate numerous dreams I have had. I revel in them; I almost relish them. There is a satisfaction and a curiosity for me when I remember a dream I have just had. Then I try hard, and most times fail, to fathom from which depths of the mysterious psyche it has come.

    Does what we dream have anything to do with who we are – I mean, who we really are? Or are they nothing more than cross-wired enactments of real or read-of, or seen-on-television images that distort behind the curtain of sleep?

    What is that stuff that dreams are made of? Wouldn't it be fun to know! ... or maybe not.