My Dream Self and Me – Dream Flesh

Posted on August 23, 2006 in Musings | 0 comments

My Dream Self and Me – Dream Flesh

Published on Dream Flesh in 2006

I am hurrying down the street under a gray winter sky. I notice several eerily familiar toys arranged in a storefront, and I stop to look. A flood of realizations arises. First, I know that am dreaming, asleep in a bed in a tiny one-room apartment in the servants’ quarters of a ritzy Paris condominium. Second, I recognize the setting: a dream version of Delaware Avenue, a main drag in Buffalo, New York, that passes by my parents’ house. I know that this dream street crosses the river into Canada, and that my dream version of Toronto is right on the other side of the border. I once drove a dream bus down this Delaware Avenue, discovering the hard way that I didn’t know how to drive a bus. I’ve climbed down the crumbling stone bridge that spans the river, leaping lightly from the carved railing to a thin ledge far below and from there down to a moss-covered outcropping, unafraid of falling into the dangerously fast rushing water. In this alternative layout, a building where I actually used to live in Toronto stands elsewhere — at the southernmost edge of the city, on the lake. At one point a loading dock in the back yard leads into the water; I have met many whales there.

Memories recalled within dreams often prove false upon waking, part of the construction of the sleeping mind. When I woke from this dream, however, curled in the bed of my Parisian home, I truly remembered having had those other dreams. In my dream world, I had created alternate versions of places I know well and then juxtaposed them to create consistent settings, places I revisited so often that my dreaming self knew the layout as well as this waking me knows my neighborhood.

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