Saturday, July 25, 2009

This morning I dreamt that I was waiting to be sworn in to my new job as a congressman and while trying to remember the oath, I was mildly embarrassed to realize that I wasn’t quite acquainted with a particular issue that I should have been speaking out on.

I dream endlessly of a man who lives alone and finds himself persecuted by the presence of uninvited people whom he know to be mirages – ghosts. He orders them out. He throws things at them, but still they arrive, men and women, all types, ordinary people as well, but they are not invited and he is slowly driven mad.

Then I am at the university. I want to make contact with Joan from my writing class. ‘Old Joan,’ I want to say, because Joan must now be nearly eighty. I wander around the University of Melbourne from my youth. There are pieces of plaster left sticking out from a position on the wall upstairs and I stand in front with another girl trying to prise them off. We watch them fall to the ground. I know that these traces of plaster are part of an experiment, a research project to establish the fate of this plaster – will it fall of its own accord, will students pick it off, or will it stay?

We prise it all off, large shards of concrete and watch it fall, worried that it might hit someone below. It does not. By the time we have scraped the wall clean and walk away, I hear one of the nuns, the reverend Mother say to her colleague,

‘We hope the students leave one wall intact’.

It is too late. We have peeled the concrete lumps off both walls.

This dream reminds me of Italy, the land of render. Two weeks ago as my husband and I walked through the town of Teolo we watched workmen repair walls. They mixed a red brown paste pitted with bits of broken tile to fill the holes they had unearthed behind a layer of render, presumably peeled back because of rising damp. Then they rendered over the lot in white plaster.

To me, this could be a metaphor on life.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Dear Tig:

I had a dream about you last night. Peter and I came out to visit you in Arizona, and the land was covered in wildflowers. We hopped in the back of an old pickup truck and drove around looking at all the colors. Then we spent a lot of time collecting flowers and stripping the petals off to make heaps of petals on a white enamel counter. Oh, and I did your dishes.

Of late musicians and artists appear in my dreams.

I sat in the humble mountain home of cool and kind Carlos Santana, listening to him play and tell of the heirlooms about him. Notably a silver flute. Not tarnished, but old. Creamy soft. His grand or even great-grandfather's flute.

The flute was wrapped in a heavy alpaca knit sweater, and in the body of the flute were markings. Secret markings. Triangles. Numbers., scribed in triangles on the plate near the thumb rest. The numbers woven into the warp and weft of the sweater now used to protect the flute. Magically, the plate opened to reveal the markings more clearly.

I was told by Carlos that it represented a Mexican tradition (which he named and I thought I recognized the word from life, but could not repeat it now, if my life depended on it). The tradition I was told was that his grandmother, or great grandmother, as the case may be, had knit the sweater as a gift to accompany the grandson, providing comfort for the departing man as he headed off to live in the world. A gift of appreciation for the comfort and protection she had received from the grandson.

Yes we talked of guitars, but memories were blown in the flute's happy breath. Oosh 'bgoosh.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I needed only to tie a ribbon around a nice flat box from a department store, but the lid came off, the box fell from the table, and the contents shattered on the floor. In that brief moment, the table turned into one of the old wooden trailers my father and I used in the vineyard on our farm many years ago. The trailer was covered with things that have been in our family for ages. Some were broken, others were oddly distorted. There was one wrinkled envelope on which my mother had written, as a reminder to herself, that my father had died. I started putting the bits and pieces into a brown paper grocery bag.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Last night’s dream parade included: Renny Pritikin, a suggestion from me that we didn’t need the big room we had built for video editing because the software made all the decks redundant, photographing buildings on fire at night, traveling from Sweden to Finland, a zombie dream so frightening that I woke from it and refused to go back to sleep except that it part of another dream, some fight with people during an urban breakdown like a riot, David Deitcher, helping him locate a display case for an exhibition he was the curator of, becoming interested in working with etching plates, attempting a few monoprints regretting that I hadn’t looked through all the books I saw for sale next door because of the ideas they would have given me for drawings, trying to get my burning building pictures into the Chronicle, because its offices were nearby.
Dreamed that a friend of mine bought a house where the Obamas were temporarily living with their three children (they had a new baby boy). The house was painted a kind of oxidized copper color, and was near an ocean. The house was designed to have a partly open space inside like a kind of dock beneath which water from the ocean was flowing. The water was full of life: a strange creature I was calling a “skate” although it wasn’t a skate, but some kind of camouflage-y, leaf-resembling fish that stayed upright on the water like a little sail (it “skated”), and any number of jellyfish, octopi, and other creatures that looked like microscopic organisms blown up very large… and all of these were biolumimnescent. Trippy! I remember some of the details of the house’s interior: a kind of patchwork of linoleum and hexagonal bathroom-style tiles on the kitchen/ entranceway floor, a little corner shelf made of decorative Italian tiles, but very old, everything old, unmatched, in yellowed tones. Old hardware on the kitchen cabinets, lucite with little flowers, I think, and circular, like those I saw recently in a neighbor’s house, apparently the same ones Louis Armstrong had in his house in Queens Anyway I kept going back in the dream to look at the water space and all of the life forms that moved around in it.

I was tied naked to a stake

in a gawd-for-saken land

way out "there"

the sun was blazing hot

and circling me a- hooten and a-hoolerin'

was a band of (also) naked Indian women-girls


I am falling head first down down down a tube..

I can see a light wayyyyyy down there...

then suddenly POW!

I egress from the dark-dank tube

into the light and just drift endlessly away

Saturday, July 18, 2009

I'm at a cocktail reception (dinner to follow) in a gathering place with a big floor-to-ceiling front window. The Jackson family is there, milling around, and I'm talking to Janet. Despite their world-wide notoriety they seem very friendly and down-to-earth, though a bit distracted. When it's time for dinner I end up sitting next to Michael, but the name on his seating card is "Brian Jeffrey" (or "Jeffries"). He's very charming, but shy and uncomfortable. After dinner he disappears and everyone is worried, looking for him. I lose interest in their search and drift off. A few days later my sister Toni shows me two telephone messages she wrote down for me while I was out: one is from someone who's supposed to be my dead boyfriend Arnie (or maybe Woody Allen -- ??) and the other is from "Brian"/Michael. These notes were written on the back of a small piece of paper torn from a tiny notebook -- I almost missed them. Brian's note is a message about a big party he's inviting me to, but it's not until "12/14" (at first I think it's "1/14"). Toni's note says " . . . he said there'll be poets and musicians there, and he thinks you'll really like it." He's left a number, but I won't call him — calling will make it seem like I like him or something — I'll just show up.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Dream in 3 Successive Parts:

I was eating a bowl of small pink peony petals (conceptually peony, but blown rosebud looking), slightly browning at the edges so they HAD to be eaten. Like cereal. Out of my green/blue handmade bowl. I wondered why it wasn't a more popular breakfast food.

Then a cavernous cement-floored shop with a Grand National body up on jackstands waiting to restored.

Then my father asked me the rules to a game I never heard of. "Can't you explain it to an old man like me?" But I didn't know what he was talking about. Felt very sad.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Dream I go into a room where there are maybe five guys who look like figures from Aztec cartoon drawings. Some of them are maybe animals. Each one is bodypainted a different kind of metal: oxidize d copper, bronze, etc. Each one has some kind of magic jewelry that, when they put it on, acts as a torture device. Two of them argue about whether they have any volition or not about whether the jewelry will torture them. One says, I’ve been painting? eating? it all my life.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

This morning I dreamed I was getting ready for work. I was applying
lipstick, Cherry Cola, an actual lipstick I had when I was a girl, and
matching eye shadow, and my lipstick wasn't exactly right so I put
another color on top and all the while I was humming Mozart's horn
concerto K.412. Then I got dressed in a red skirt and black stockings,
and a red blouse and red shoes, and a short red wool coat and a red
beret still humming the horn concerto, and I was happy in this ritual
but I was late I was late for my bus, I knew I was going to be late for
work. I picked up a pile of books and held them close to my chest and
ran outside, and I was in New Orleans or Paris because the street was
full of open outdoor markets except for an unusual handrail all the way
down the street which was polished wood with knobs-the kind of knobs
you'd hang a short red coat on, and I was running and humming the horn
concerto and it started to snow, and my feet were slipping in the snow
(my shoes were small red flats), and I realized I was going the wrong
direction away from my bus instead of toward it, so I turned and ran
back down the street, snow coming down even harder, humming Mozart the
whole time happy to be inside of Mozart inside of my dream, and thinking
how fine the red wool coat was, and tasting the Cherry Cola lipstick,
but a little anxious to be late for work.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Just dreamed that the New York Times this morning, instead of having "New York Times" at the top of the front page, had "THROWS WHITE SPACE AWAY"

Sunday, July 12, 2009

broadway junction

i had this dream last night

broadway junction

she spoke to me

her language

was these strange

whirs and whines

she asked me

if we would burn her down

she wanted to be ashes

i told her


i told her

i'm sorry honey

i asked her


when she's all ashes

if we could retrieve

her stained glass


and wear them

as our halos

she said


as i got off the train

she said

one more thing


tell eric

i always loved

I imagine that I am still living in NYC but have no place to stay, so I will sleep in hotel rooms as long as I can afford it. I know of a hotel in Queens that's relatively cheap, but my intention to head in that direction is deflected by someone (a total stranger?) who tells me that as long as I'm getting involved with hotels there's one in Midtown Manhattan I simply must visit. This person tells me that there are events that occur on the first floor or the basement levels that are very dramatic and are of astonishing phsyical beauty. However, if I walk into the hotel, it is better that I not seek to view the events directly; rather I should enter one of the rooms on the floors above--each room has a shaft with an open top attached to one of its walls, rising only to the height of an average human, and you can peer down the shaft to the hotel's bottom, though obviously you could also throw down small objects.

I manage to sneak into the hotel and enter an un-occupied room. Despite the fact that the hotel is so expensive for those who actually pay, the room looks comfortable but not particularly fancy. When I enter it is evening, and I want to take a nap; somehow the matter of seeing the once-in-a-lifetime spectacles below is not on my mind at this time, nor at any later time in the dream. I do nap for a short time, and then observe my suitcase on a table, with some of the clothes that were within it removed and placed neatly beside it. However, I do not remember opening the suitcase and taking out any of the clothes.

I discover that I am still tired, and decide to take another little nap. When I wake up it morning. I am quite panicked, because somehow I assume that with the sun up it will be harder to walk out of the hotel with no questions asked than it would have been in the middle of the night. I gaze wistfully out of the window of my fourth or fifth story room, pondering the possiblity that when I take the elevator down to the ground level I could bypass the front desk and find a back door that I could walk through inconspiciously. I gaze into a round mirror that stands upon another table in the room, and everything about my face is unsurprising except that what heretofore had been the whites of my eyes were now shiny silver.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Last night I dreamed that I was in a large lecture hall. A snooty, old-school, literary expert took the podium. He was somehow connected to Richard Howard. The literary expert looked around the room and decided it was too crowded so he read a list of names of poets and magazines who had to leave. They were all from smaller, less prestigious magazines.

After those poets left disappointed, a late-to-arrive poet tried to enter the lecture hall. The booted poets were gathered around the door, hoping to overhear the lecture. They told her she couldn't come in. The tardy poet interrupted the literary expert and asked for an exception.

I was furious. I stood up and said that there were plenty of chairs, everyone should be allowed to come back. Other poets in the room agreed with me.

The literary expert asked who I was -- I said I was the Paris Review.

On the second day I stayed home because it was the same speaker and I had quite enough. Gideon came home early with a note from school saying that they wanted him to be evaluated for 5 days because they believed there was something emotionally wrong with him. He flipped out at the 2nd lecture and attacked his classmates. I asked him if he did this and he admitted it. The note instructed me to call the counselor, "Zachariah," for the evaluation.

I was concerned. I understood his rage at the literary expert, I felt it too, but I didn't understand why he attacked his peers. His anger was misdirected. He should have bum rushed the podium.

Friday, July 10, 2009

christopher rizzo's name was gary fox, and he was wearing a suit where we wondered off to talk in his car then returned. later at a cafe' in kingston ny. i looked through beads on a table. lee ann brown was on the phone in the chair next to me, planning a boat trip with ( i realized) anne gorrick. lee ann didn't know who i was. she laughed about the fact that they were going to do a gas called B___ene (Benedrene?) on the boat. lee ann left after hanging up. k came back in, and we laughed about it. on the way out, i pocketed a bead.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

We were in a grassy area next to a stream. The grass was so vibrant green it had a blue aura, how I imagine Tennessee to be. We were shy with each other at first. You barely looked at me but when you did it was with the same telling eyes as always. I could tell what you wanted to know and it didn't take me long to spill it. "You know I'm in love with you, right?" You melted a little at this. You were happy to hear that it's real. I was happy to see you standing your ground, not running away like I always imagined you would do. "I want to get to know you better," I followed. Ease. We can be friends.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

At a dangerous turn in the river, a raft loaded with farm animals hits a snag. Several fall off — sheep, pigs, goats, cows — and are swept into the current. The air is filled with heartrending cries. Those still on board jump in the water after them. One, however, a large tan-colored pig with black spots, calmly climbs ashore and starts foraging in someone’s brightly colored vegetable garden. The pig doesn’t notice when the others slip beneath the surface.

Monday, July 6, 2009

  1. It takes the form of a documentary. Recently, lots of people having been getting red lights shone in their faces. Just going about their normal business, then their face is illuminated a bright red. Investigators have tried to find the source of the light, but to no avail. It happens indoors and outdoors. There have been sightings of a large, red light source in the clouds.

  2. I am in a comfortable beige study. Leather, sepia, oak. I am sitting on a comfortable chair and am petting a young polar bear. It is biting and scratching me (painfully). As I play with its white fur I notice the skin underneath is completely black.

  3. I am trekking in the Himalayas. It feels like Tibet. There is a large group of us and we walk single file on the suggested path of rocks. It is very sunny. Our guide tells us that we are to climb a natural stairway - "Only 20 meters!" We climb and I am third up. There is a building and a stone doorway with a tiny hole at the base - the first two have gone through the hole. I know I cannot go through the hole, so I step around the doorway. It was free-standing anyway. The residents of the building welcome us. The others hand over a stone as a gift. I hand them a terracotta pot / waterbowl that I had picked up ealier and carried with me. I have put a stone in it as well.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

1 .....something had been going on -- saw the shadow of a creature on the ceiling of small white room, no windows, descending -- not scary -- a parrot. I looked for biscuits in a cupboard and a white bowl for some water, because I knew the parrot had come to help us. The only biscuits I could find had jam in the middle & I knew that would not suit a parrot too well, but they were all I had. The only bowl I could find was wide and rather shallow, but never mind. I asked the parrot if it would like the biscuits and water and it said it would. "I'm glad you speak English," I said, knowing now for certain that it was a helpful person changed into a parrot....

&2 I was driving my car up a hill, round a bend, very badly, drifting way out to the right, dangerously, but it wasn't a car, it was a bicycle....Stefan was riding the bicycle and I saw him take off some thirty feet above the houses at the side of the hill, and disappear behind them. I heard him yell, in the distance, "Dad!". He was bloody, but no bones broken, walking towards me. But why had he been wearing his new green trousers when riding the dirty old bicycle?