When you’re woken up in the middle of a dream, you feel cheated. Though it’s your own mind spinning the fantasy, conjuring friends, places, and situations for your amusement, it feels foreign. This morning I was in a place I enjoyed, seeing odd things like a stunt plane that flew like a helicopter, with a pilot half the size of the plane. There was an a capella group that did a multiplying act for an audience seated in an outdoor amphitheatre. Two singers became four, then eight. Though the audience knew the trick, we still applauded. Outside the amphitheater, I met some friends and planned a barbecue. We each arranged who would bring what, then I saw an old friend and had to convince her to join us. She was walking away, pretending not to see us. I was just about to talk to her when the dream ended, cut clean by the morning news on my alarm clock. Cheated out of a conversation that never existed, one that I created myself.
In dreams we ignore the fantastic and whimsical and seek normalcy: although people are flying through the air on bee wings, eating ice cream cones made of cotton, we’re just trying to catch a bus. In real life, we try to ignore normalcy and seek the fantastic and whimsical. If you doubt this, check out the most popular books and videos at the library—they ain’t non-fiction.
So here’s the thing that gets my cerebellum all in a twist: why can’t we loosen up our right brain so it can creep in a little more into left-brain work during the day? Highly creative people can do this, I suspect, and as a result they seem a little…well…weird. Someone who is all right brain would be a drooling lump, dreaming all day in a hallucinogenic fog. All left-brain people are, to put it mildly, not fun to be around. I’d like to drink from the intoxicating pool of the right brain more often. I can go there each night but I don’t often get to remember every dream, to wake with the taste still on my lips. Apparently I remember my dreams more than most people, and I know some unlucky souls who can’t remember anything. Gah! It’s like going to a movie and facing the back of the theater!
So I’ll finish with an image of a landscape that doesn’t exist, one created in the computer. I might find this place in my dreams someday, and will see what is left in the house. Or who.