Wednesday, May 26, 2010

This morning I dreamed that I was sitting in front of my bathroom vanity with a Jungian analyst, a psychiatrist and Chris. We were having a session to discuss my dreams. The psychiatrist and Chris were quiet. The psychiatrist used my ironing board as a writing desk. I went to my purse to get my dream print-out, but I forgot to bring it. I tried to recount them by memory, but all I could remember was "there was this hulk."

I think I was trying to tell them about my dream from the day before. There was a murderous giant from another dimension. At first I was thinking like Andre the Giant, but on further thought, this giant was much more like Jaws from James Bond. He was really terrifying and cruel. My dream giant didn't have a metal mouth, he did use a metal chain-like thing to kill people--including someone who turned out to be my mother from the other dimension. She was kind of carnival-like, short, blonde mullet, beard. She was working on a computer underground, accessible by a manhole. The giant came to get information (addresses) but when she failed to give him the address of a children's center, he beat her to death. Fortunately she had the ability to regenerate and come back to life, so she was able to warn me (and my grown daughter, and her baby). Anyhow there was a lot more to this dream, a painting, a Guantanamo Bay from another dimension, soldiers, teachers, a living teddy bear that needed sunshine and water that I forgot about, money, three adult children from the other dimension I recently learned of, etc. I'm dreaming a lot about other dimensions and holes. As you might assume, often these holes open up to lead to these dimensions. Or sometimes they instill fear and paranoia. Aside from man-giants, I also dream of many items that I describe as "giant" in my notes. Something big must be coming.

But what have I dreamed of hulks? That's more specific.

8/2/2009: Gideon is running a marathon. I find an Incredible Hulk tee that I want him to wear for the race, but can't find the matching sweatpants.

7/1//2009: A caretaker at a home for children turns into the Incredible Hulk and playfully wrestles a "giant" alligator.

7/21/2008: John Ashbery lies on a bed, asserts that difficulty/complexity is superior to straight-forward, easier to understand art. I challenge him, then concede he's correct. Ashbery teaches Gideon how to play "uncle" with two pieces of cardboard, one to represent Gideon and the other to stand for another little boy. Gideon already knows how to play and forces the little boy to say "uncle" three times before he's released. I tell Ashbery that Hulk Hogan already taught Gideon how to play. I add that Hulk Hogan isn't very smart. Ashbery nods his head.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I dreamt that I invented a device called the Etruscan Head Clamp. It looked like a gladiator helmet. The EHC was used on customers who check out samples of carpet & linoleum & it would squeeze one's head like a vice until the samples were returned to the flooring department.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

I could not get my car through the intersection of two streets near where I lived because the renovations in a nearby house had spread out onto the road.  The footpaths were filled with scaffolding piled high and there were trenches in strategic places that made crossing through the street either on foot or by car treacherous.

I took the baby out of the back of my car and put him into his pram intending to try to find another way through on foot.  We only lived two minutes away at the end of the street.  I did not want to be marooned here.

I found I could not push the pram for more than a few meters before I encountered yet another obstacle.  The police were busy redirecting traffic and they were useless.  The tradesmen working on the house refused to stop their work.  They too were useless.  The people stuck at the barriers and there were a number of them arriving every few minutes were also submissive and seemingly helpless.  I went from one point to another trying to find a way through, whereas others, especially the women were content to sit back and gossip among themselves.

I overheard someone complain about the difficulties of renovation.

‘You’d only do it once,’ a woman said.  ‘Once is enough.’

I had already been though it twice, and yes, I thought to myself, she is right, there is not only the emotional and physical cost, in these types of disruptions, there is also the financial cost.  I have never known a renovation that did not cause a conflict between owner and builder.  Here there was no owner to be seen.

I came into a room, which led out to the other side of the house at the top end of Beaconsfield Road.  I decided to test it.  The first jump down to the landing below was rocky but the landing seemed safe enough.  After that there was a higher leap to the ground.  I would ask someone to hand the baby down to me once I had made the leap and then they could throw the pram down after us.  I was determined.  I would not sit here waiting endlessly. 
I was stranded at an airport trying to work out which flight I should take next.  I flew then to far north Western Australia in lands inhabited only by aborigines.

My cousin lived here among them and we sat together around a table of friends.  A phone call came through from home, from my friend L.  I thought she had rung to tell me she had cancer but after I managed to decipher the message I realised that she meant it was my husband who had the cancer.  Liver cancer.

Somehow he knew this already.  He sat at the table among friends and his eyes welled with tears.

We needed more information, I said in an effort to reassure him, but I was shattered myself.  How could we cope with this?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

                       Jusepe de Ribera: Saint Sébastien

I am in a forest. It resembles the forest on the hike to Sutter Creek in Yosemite, but more tropical. I am sometimes a boy. I know what is going on. I might have had this dream before. I was following someone. I get to a part of the path where I am hiding behind some trees, watching the person I am following (who is a young person, I think a young girl. She is a young girl and I am a young boy and I have a crush on her. I know she is in grave danger and I want to save her. Actually no it is a boy I am watching and I am a young girl.) The boy goes into a big, rusty, metal shed in the forest just off the path. I watch through the window as the boy meets a very tall saint. The saint is wearing a long black robe with a hood, is at least twenty feet tall, and is wearing a medieval mask that doctors wore during the black plague with the long noses. I know that it is fate for the boy to persuade the saint to do something, possibly to persuade him to publish his sainthood - to make his sainthood known because his way of thinking about Christianity is revolutionary. The boy fails to do this, and leaves, but does not go far away. Then a powerful force blows the shed off the ground. The saint turns around to face down the hill. It might be God. It might be an angel. It might be a magical king. The force/person tells the saint that his ideas are too radical and different. The saint tells the force that his ideas about Christianity are totally reasonable and logical, and that there is no reason to feel threatened by them. (Why am I dreaming about Christianity? My grandmother took me to a synagogue in Nairobi.) The spirit demon force goes away. I go into the shed through the window because I am flying. Even though the shed is gone. But I am not flying so much as I am hovering twenty feet above the ground. I tell the saint I agree with him. I fly right up to his face and tell him to take off his mask. The saint's face is handsome. He has sunken cheeks, dark eyebrows and dark eyes. He looks very kind, and probably around 35 years old. I tell him he is beautiful and I kiss him. Then I fly away. I notice a man and a woman sitting a few feet away from the saint. I know that they are going to coach him on his sainthood. But I am concerned now with the boy I am following. He is running away out of the forest, back in the direction he came, because he is trying to get back to the city. (The city might be Berkeley, California.) He is running away because he knows that a flash flood is crashing right behind him, tumbling down the hill. While flying, I follow behind him. I am trying to save him. There are other people running too, but I am only concerned with the boy. Except at this point I might be a boy and the person I am trying to save is a girl. I told the girl to grab onto my feet and I would lift her to safety. She did that, but slipped off because she was unsure of herself. I heard the saint speak to me in my mind, encouraging me to help save the girl again. So I told her to reach for my feet again. She did. This time she got a better grip, but her hands were very sweaty and so were my calves (because we were in a tropical rainforest) so she was still slipping. She told me she was scared she was going to slip off again. So I gently put her down on the side of the path. We decided the best way for me to help her get out of the forest was for her to get on my back. Her cheerleading squad was there, but not wearing uniforms. Her cheerleading squad, which consisted of a bunch of young boys, all stood in position, ready for the girl to mount them like a human pyramid where should would be the top. She kept on repeating the name of whatever this cheerleading trick or move was called. Then her repeating of the name dissolved into her saying “chick chick chick” under her breath. As I write this now I realize that she was mimicking the birds I can hear out my window.

Monday, May 10, 2010

I host a party that turns into an all-night sleepover. J. Miller, an old friend, is there. I get to sleep for a little while.

I am on a giant plane (maybe with the same people?) on the way back from somewhere. There is food, but nothing healthy. Many people are sleeping. We are stopping in Borneo. Of the sleeping people, there is one missing: it is a small woman (her name is Mary?). I walk back and forth in the aisles of the plane. Towards the front, I look out the window as it lands in Borneo. I see giant snowy mountains not too far away. Someone says those are the Himalaya. It is captivating to watch them as we taxi. 

We get off the plane and are in a desert with a broad river in it. The river is dirty, and many destitute people sit around. I go in an SUV with Greg J., an old friend, and a woman I don't know and we park at the edge of the river, as far into it as we are able to drive. The front wheels are partially submerged in the river. It is very dry, and we are almost out of water. The woman doesn't want to, but Greg and I decide that a new fridge is the best idea. I go to get it, on foot, which requires climbing up the steep river bank. The sides of the bank have plasticized footholds built in. It is very dry on top, and far to walk where the fridges are. 

Greg and the woman go off somewhere else, to get water for all of us. There is another group of travellers around on top, too.

I meet Greg and the woman again, and they tell me that a fridge is no longer a prudent idea. without admitting it, I realize that there would have been no way to drag a fridge back across the sand by myself. However, I am upset by their decision to send me on what has become a pointless mission. I want to tell Greg that I think he is a liar for changing his mind on what we had decided.

Now, I need the water they have collected, but he put it in some kind of corroded container that looked bad to drink from. All I could do was transfer it to the only thing available- a mini safe-deposit box my grandfather gave me. I had to drink through the keyhole. The woman senses my frustration, and she informs me that I have the wrong attitude. I am still grumpy. On the way back to the car, we see a poor boy with dark skin. The river, which was indeed tidal, has receded, and now the SUV tires are on completely dry ground in the riverbed.


I dreamed that I had woken up abruptly and looked out through my front window to see my husband dressed and ready for the day.  He walked along the street in front of our house and stood to say farewell to a friend. My husband’s arms were laden with suitcases.  Where was he going?  He had not told me that he was leaving.  I tore on my dressing gown and raced into the street. 

No, he was not going anywhere, he said, he was simply bringing in the loads of shopping I had neglected to unpack from my car the day before.  We carried them in together.

After I had unloaded the shopping I found myself driving behind the wheel of what I recognised as my car, only the dashboard seemed different from what I had remembered and I had trouble getting the car into gear.  The clutch kept slipping out.

I cut in front of another car and worried it would hit the back of me but I had left enough room to avoid an accident and then I stopped at the bottom of a hill near my house.  Across the road I could see a group of people, adults and children alike all of them dressed in what looked like red and white horizontally striped jump suits.  Some wore beanies with red horns sewn out of material on their heads.  These were serious football supporters, I reasoned.  They must support the team called the Saints.

It was early morning and they were gathering for breakfast, one of them was my son.  I imagined helping him to pack his bag before this meeting.  I had checked his shoes.  They were new with a price tag of $6.00 attached to the side heel.  So cheap.  I wondered that the shop normally quiet on a Sunday morning could manage so many customers at once.

On the other side of the road there were a few similarly dressed football supporters and one or two in the post office where I stood in a queue waiting my turn.  It seemed to take forever to be served and I found myself annoyed when someone at the other end of the room who had come in after me was served before me.

I became huffy in that understated bodily way when I want it to be known that I am cross, that something is amiss but I do not want to shout it out in front of everyone.

The counter formed a half moon and three women stood behind it each serving customers in turn.  Just below the counter shielded from the over fall on the stretch of shadowed carpet I noticed that someone had dropped their watch.  Then I noticed not one watch but two and three and four.  There was a line of watches along the stretch of ground below the counter’s overhang and I set about collecting them.  I had thought at first that I might keep one for myself – stealing I knew, but who cared – finders keepers.

In the end I decided to hand them all over at the counter when it came my turn.  What could I do with watches such as these?  None seemed particularly valuable, but I wondered that so many people in the one store could stand in the queue and lose their watch.  It was uncanny. 

Friday, May 7, 2010

dreamt I was -had been visiting Seneca & Megan, friends from Idaho (& this perhaps where I was visiting), but had by chance met & was conversing with the household of young people that lived "around the corner". They showed me their actualized recipe for marijuana pancakes, something I had in fact dreamed up in Idaho (well, sinsemilia abbelskivers), & when one of those women inquired of a place to practice & record music, I told her of the modish, which is a place here actual transplant friends of mine do same. I literally spelled it out for her, & upon waking realized I was trading the secrets of the waking world for that of my subconscious.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

"...and he (Thelonious Monk) came to me, in a dream.  Decked out in divine alligator shoes, a dark green silk suit, bamboo sunglasses, and a cold straw hat, he snuck up behind me as I sat hunched over my stepfather's Steinway upright, looked over my shoulder, and simply mumbled, "You're making the wrong mistakes.""

From Thelonious Monk: The life and Times of an American Original by Robin D. G. Kelley. Thanks to Anne Gorrick for sending it in.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

I had a dream last night of which I remember a small portion. I had lost twenty dollars at some sort of art gallery, a small one, that felt more like a bar than a gallery. I knew everyone who worked there. A woman I knew found the twenty dollars but refused to acknowledge she'd done so. I hounded her throughout the course of an evening, but she refused to give in. I went home and then came back the next day.

When I arrived I could see her talking to her friend, another woman, it may have been her lover. She held the twenty furtively near her purse. I heard her say she planned to drop the bill in the stall of the bathroom and that she would let someone else find and return it. I waited while she entered the stall.

There happened to be two stalls, both of which were inside the bar. There were no walls separating the bathroom from the main area of the gallery. I wandered into another room to kill some time. A board meeting seemed to be going on. I was surprised to discover how many of my friends were on the board.

When the woman with my money wandered in to attend the board meeting, I slipped out, fell to my knees and began feeling around with my fingers under the stall doors for the bill. I eventually had to reach in near the toilet to pull it out. Satisfied, I returned to the room where the board meeting had taken place.

It had ended by then and people seemed to be milling about, chatting, having a drink. I sat down at a booth, Charles Bernstein also sat down. He pulled out a stack of xeroxed sheets with large text printed on them All the text seemed to have been cut off at the left margin. Charles began to explain in great detail what the cause of the missing margin happened to be. I got distracted by something else. I I don't remember what. I remember feigning interest, though I had stopped paying attention to his explanation.

Monday, May 3, 2010

This morning this appeared at the top of my Flickr contacts page:
I went to Pearlblossom Highway to see what Mike had to say about In Your Dreams. Last night Mike had a dream about money, and poets. Last night I had a dream about money and poets. (I suppose poets dreaming of poets and money is not to be unexpected.) I have a medallion I've been wearing around my neck daily since Stephanie gave it to me for my birthday in February. It's made of some kind of brass-colored metal, some sort of greenish stone, and it has a big 'S' on it. (You can see it clearly, if mirror reversed, in this picture.) In the dream, I am standing with a group of people, of poets, 'after a reading', but it is in the hallway of the annexed offices of SFMOMA, where I work. Alli wants to sell my necklace to get her money back. She collects a lot of bills from all the others, all the money is stuffed in my pockets and my necklace is laid on the counter. I am so filled with rage, helpless anger, big deep feeling of loss over the loved medallion. I yell at Alli and throw all the money at her, which falls down in front of her eyes and over her head, landing under a big green plant in a white pot on the white counter where my medallion is--I've showered her with money.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

On the sheet of paper, the list, double-spaced, one-line
descriptions of each of the six murders of pianists I have
committed. I’m dead. I have confessed to all six.
A movie is to be made of them -- gory, throats slit.
The movie is about to be shown – I don’t
want to see that!