The insurmountable obstacle of writing dreams. The subject matter is so tempting, the vistas so alien and raw, the emotions so visceral; we are drawn back to them as fuel for our creations. The “Inspiration Junkyard”, where we might pick and choose what odd and strange thing we need to add that purely personal touch to our writing, but it is fraught with dangers.
We cannot get back to the dream state. Once our waking mind looks back at the dream as past experience, we interpret it and in doing so, we change it. The incomprehensible nature of the dream, is such that it is like catching smoke; it slips from our hands when grasped and if we ensnare it behind some impermeable barrier, it quickly becomes stale.
The temptation is too great to resist, though. No thinker, no writer, no artist; has ever had the fortitude to ignore the fertile field of the dream state. It is at once, both lush and barren; so easily accessed and so terribly transposed, but we go back time and time again.
For most of us, our return to the dream is not by choice. For those of us both blessed and cursed with a rich dream-life; we are drawn into endless parallel universes and countless states of mind bending reality; from which there is no escape ’til waking. It is like being abducted in our most vulnerable state and subjected to whatever pleasures or torments the sea of subconsciousness has for us. Ripped from our respite by phantoms and returned by morning, with heads swimming with images, emotions and physical memories as real as the scars on our skin.
Who wouldn’t go back there for their fodder?
It is as much a trammel as a treasure. We don’t seem to have the ability to recreate the dream with our waking mind. At best, we can transcribe the events faithfully and create wonderful fantasy wordscapes for our readers, but at worst; we bore them with the inflated sense of importance we put on our most personal of experiences. Stewards of this material, we have the responsibility of ambassadors from another land and not hawkers and shysters, selling dreams like fish in a market.
So, if you dream – dream faithfully. Dream vividly and share with all your skill, but don’t delude yourself into thinking that you know the half of what your are attempting to transmit, because the dream is a mystery to you as well and tonight, there will be another. With luck, we will all have many more dreams and our “Inspirational Junkyards” will never run out of spare parts for our writing.