Monday, November 16, 2015

I dreamt I was walking on a residential city street late at night, smoking a hand-rolled cigarette.  A police car suddenly pulled up next to me.  Even though it wasn’t pot, I chucked the cig, so there wouldn’t be an appearance of impropriety.  The policeman emerged covered from head to toe in high-tech armor, especially his head.  He looked like a gigantic insect or alien.  I gasped in fear.  He reached for his gun and said, “What?”  “You frightened me,” I said.  He took me to a mobile outdoor police station, basically a vehicle with an open trunk.  Several other perps waited there to pay fines and fill out paperwork.  I only had to fill out paperwork.  There was no fine for me, which was slightly surprising, but seemed right, since I hadn’t done anything wrong.  As I was leaving, the cops asked if I had seen much tennis lately, which was also slightly surprising.  I told them very cheerfully that I had played a lot of tennis and hoped to play more.  Then I walked away into the late, late night.

I dreamt I was sitting next to an Italian guy on a bench in Venice.  We started talking to each other in Italian about Italian poetry, going through all the great names.  I mentioned Giovanni Pascoli, to his delight, then Guido Gozzano.  Then, we turned to Eugenio Montale.  He said that late in life Montale had frequented places like this.  He pointed to a twisting covered passageway with an outdoor restaurant by the entrance.  “Montale would eat a hamburger at a place like that.”  I decided to eat there.  A waitress came up to me.  We spoke Italian.  I struggled to communicate with her in exactly the same way that I would struggle to communicate with someone in Italian if I were awake, making the same language decisions, the same compromises to communicate something.  I ordered a hamburger, but then was surprised when a waiter brought a bowl of soup, which didn’t have much soup in it, but was “all crackers.”  I hoped it didn’t cost much.


I dreamt I was visiting my mother, who died four months ago.  She was dying in a big bedroom upstairs in a suburban house.  I was very upset, thinking she was about to die, but then she seemed a little better.  I went from there to a Camp Kennebec reunion at a party place.  Not connecting with the people well, I wandered into another room, downstairs, that I thought was part of the same party.  But the kids were really young, the boys short.  It must have been a bar mitzvah party.  I walked out of the catering place.  On the way down the long driveway, I encountered my friend Peter Saenger.  I walked with him back into the catering place.  Inside, I noticed a program for a classical-music concert that would be taking place shortly.  It was an amazing program, with many pieces.  Sadly, for me, it was sold out.  Peter Saenger had a ticket and went inside.  I picked up the program, thinking that if I saved it, I would remember to go to the concert next year.  I wandered into a gift shop.  It occurred to me that I would wind up putting the program somewhere and forgetting it by the time the concert came around next year.  Maybe I should just throw the program away.  As I walked out of the gift shop without buying anything, I worried they would think the program in my hand was something that I hadn't paid for, but no one bothered me.

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