My dreams are of no interest to anyone but me, and yet they do tap into my essential understanding that life is an odyssey replete with failure and regret. I’m not saying this is anything new – the Greeks figured it out thousands of years back – but it is the fuel.
And so when I dream of being humiliated by administrators or being rejected by someone I love or trying to take a shit in front of a crowd, I am reminding myself not only of my fears but, more importantly, gaining access to something more universal. I am alone and know that will never change.
I am not one for dream scenes with the character lost in their heads; this is the part of the story where I lose complete interest. That’s not to say that these images aren’t a wellspring of inspiration, the pure of the id as it were, that can be woven into the narrative, like John Savage fear-grunting in The Deerhunter or Tanner Mayes clinging to her necklace.
What makes a story isn’t the arc, conflict and resolution but how it accesses what it means to be conscious. The western world seems bent on burying all of that fine stuff just to fill our pockets with more things and regret.
I didn’t dream of beer but of eating Checkerboard ice cream, spilling it all over, and I was jealous of that person and dreamed myself back to my old university where I was living on my own, shitting in the sink, not even closing the door.
I love the mania of getting into this, slopping through these base things, finding what might be next, making clouds so that I might escape into a tiny convoluted body and fly again. None of this has happened, but I think that it might. It’s about knowing that unknowable thing within.