Thursday, March 31, 2011

I woke up and I was chasing three of my friends threw a suburban water park.  They had "borrowed" (stolen) my laptop.  One of them was holding my laptop above his head.  They jumped into the water.  I jumped in too.  I had asked them what they were doing with my laptop and they didn't answer me.  I was afraid to demand that they return it to me.  I was chain smoking as I waded after them through the pool.  There was an artificial cascading slope with the water flowing upwards and this made sense.  I followed them up it and the water carried me up the slope.  Water was splashing on the laptop.  The bottom of the laptop was coming apart from the rest of the laptop.  They entered the deep end of the pool.  My friend couldn't hold onto the computer anymore because he had to use his arms to tread water.  It dropped into the water and began to float away.  I swam to it and picked it up.  I reached the side of the pool and put it on the light gray concrete.  I woke up and my laptop was laying on the ground next to my bed.  There was tape on the sides of it because it was getting old and rotting.  I lit a cigarette and looked out the window at people walking past on the sidewalk.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

There's    nothing     baby     safe

earth    cakes    all     ...................

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Dream 14 March 2011

I went to see a couple who worked together as joint therapists.  They had an odd technique.  Each worked separately or as a pair to somehow unseat their patient’s defences.  They had a way of making you feel as if you really mattered for the duration of your session time.  They prodded and probed.  They encouraged you to take up all sorts of unusual positions, for me one that involved climbing to the top of a tower, something I would never normally dare to do, but by the end of the session as the next clients were lining up to enter the space, your time was over and you would be sent off unceremoniously as if what had just gone on for the hour before was all a charade.

After this session I needed to get home.  I travelled alone but I knew that my sister and a friend who then morphed into one of my daughters travelled in parallel , but across different routes as they too made their ways home.

At one stage halfway up the side of a mountain I heard the screams of my friend/daughter and rushed to the other side to find that she had fallen into a river.  There was a chance she might drown and I had to work fast to free her from underneath the branch in the river that now pinned her down.  The dream went on but my memories of it stop here.


Dream, 27 March 2011.

I slept late and in the morning I dreamed I was staying at a friend’s house in the country, a large sprawling country estate that had been built several years earlier and was now in a state of polite decay.  Things that were broken had been left that way.

There was a party in progress for the oldest daughter of the farmer who owned this property, but she was not there.  She had already been shipped off overseas to enjoy a post school sabbatical, though I wondered why.  She did not deserve it.  She had scarcely done any work in her final school years and had only just managed to scrape through her year twelve.  But her parents were indulgent and they could not see what else to do with this wayward daughter.  The other daughters were more amiable and hard working.  One of them was a friend with one of my daughters, which is how I found myself at this party.

At one stage one of my daughters came up to me.  She was cross because I had forgotten to do as he had asked earlier that day.  She had been away at work all day and had asked me to telephone another of her friends and invite her to the party.
 ‘I forgot,’ I said and my daughter huffed off.

It was too late to invite the girl but I rang her anyhow in the faint hope she might still come as a companion to my daughter.  No such luck.  The girl could not come but at least I had tried.

I wandered around the property, mock Roman statues everywhere, in some places missing a nose or an arm or the fingers on one hand.  They were rendered in white painted concrete and had an eerie feel rather like a plaster of Paris figure I had seen in a photo the day before of a person sitting astride a bed, all white bandages to shape the man’s body.

I sat at a table then with two women and a young priest in black clothes.  The women were having a loud conversation about the priest wondering together whether or not he was gay. I could see he was embarrassed.  They talked about him as though he was gay.
‘What does it matter?’ I said and tried to draw the priest into the conversation where at least he would not be so objectified.
‘I think everyone is gay to some extent,’ I said.

The priest smiled but did not divulge his orientation.  Secretly, I hoped he was not out rightly gay because I found myself attracted to him.  I would have no hope with him.  He was a priest and if he were gay as well, I would have no hope at all.

Monday, March 28, 2011

I apologize to those who have sent dreams in the last few days for the delay in posting them. They will be posted tomorrow.

                     --Lynn Behrendt

Sunday, March 13, 2011

I am travelling with my family through the English countryside at night.  We travel by car, crowded inside, each one squashed against the other.  My younger sister joins us.  She looks more weather beaten than I remember.  She is an adult now in my dream and has entered into a new relationship, she tells us.

We stop to buy supplies but most of the shops are closed.  The only places we can visit are small scungy cafes.  They smell of cigarette smoke and the fat from deep fried fish and chips.

At one stage my sister and I leave the others to make a trip by train.  I had intended to read a book on this trip but the countryside is too interesting, as are the people who occupy the stations we pass through.  Everywhere it seems there are large groups of uniformed police men and women, not so much on patrol as on training courses.  There is a holiday atmosphere everywhere and my sister and I relax into our journey.

I am asleep and awake at the same time in my dream, the sort of drowsy awakeness that leaves my body flaccid but my mind alert.  Somehow the music from the radio station Triple JJJ rattles through my head like an earworm and the DJ drones on about the hottest one hundred.  The names of the bands intrigue me.  One is called ‘Nebbermine’, the others contain plays on words that I find delightful and clever.

Not only do the musicians play thumping and excellent music to my mind, they are clever and witty as well.  I feel my stomach sag onto the cushion and I think to hold it in.  As I do so my insides ache.  I wonder whether the reason our stomachs hang out after we have eaten big meals is so that the extra size does not interfere with our digestive system, does not impact on other organs.

I slip off into another round of fitful sleep and notice the signs of the station that is our destination.

‘We’ve missed our stop, ‘ I tell my sister, who jerks up in her seat.
‘We’ll have to get off at the next station and go back.’
‘No,’ I say to her.  ‘Let’s do the round again.  Let’s stay asleep now.’

My sister is hesitant but she agrees.  We have a ticket that allows unlimited travel for the week.  We will be covered whether inspectors come on board or not.  But now I cannot settle down. My sleep has been too interrupted with the talking and I wake up.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I was vacationing with someone in my life whom I don't know very well; it was late at night, and we were asleep on different beds, on different sides of the room.  In my dream, I awoke and attempted to look out the foggy, 30-something-th floor window of our vacation condo.   We had been traveling together for days, though I do not remember where we were. Because it was humid outside, condensation had gathered, and I couldn't see out of the room.  Against the opposite wall there was a television on mute.  I heard this incredibly loud sound, earthquake-like.  Suddenly the television caught up with what I was hearing, and I saw on the live newscast that a tall skyscraper was crumbling in slow motion -- and it was the building next to ours.  I wiped the window with my forearm, but the fog wouldn't disappear.  I turned back to the television, and suddenly I began to fall backwards in the room, almost foot-over-head, except that I caught the edge of a table and held on.  My friend's bed began to slide, and the widows burst.  I closed my eyes and felt the floor fall from underneath me.  I fell for a very long time, until I fell no  more.

I had no desire to open my eyes.  Somewhere in the falling I realized that I was still asleep, that the memory of having woken up in the middle of the night was a continuation of the dream-state.  I consciously thought how visually-interesting it would be to see the walls crumbling, my friend's face in the room with me, whatever was outside the window (having tried twice -- in vain -- to see out of it already), but I could not force any desire to actually see it.  It was perhaps the most tranquil moment in a dream I've had lately (rivaling one I had about my niece four years ago), and when I awoke the second time, the time in which I'm existing now, I couldn't shake it, couldn't get back to sleep.  My bedroom window is now fogged; the bedroom door is shut.   And there's this simultaneous feeling of both seclusion and inclusion still in the room right now.

Friday, March 11, 2011

We have arranged for Dad to stay at our favorite beachside resort in Mexico. He and I arrive by taxi; the driver says behind to get the luggage together and bring it along behind us. There is an expanse of sand dunes and scattered palm trees. I lead the way, telling Dad encouraging things—but the sand is heaped and humped, the palms frayed by wind. There has been a storm, but now it's just gusty wind. The hotel looks like a hulk, battered; staff hurry here and there making repairs. A woman meets us at the bottom of the front stairs. "Hay mucho viento," I say. "Sí," she says, leading the way. "Todo el día?" I ask. "Sí." I second-guess myself: "Yo quería decir todavía." She smiles at me kindly. Dad has not said a word; he follows along looking serene and incurious.I suddenly realize this isn't his kind of place, and with all the work going on he won't be able to get the rest he needs. The woman leave suss at the lobby desk, but ho one is there. We wander around the vast room, its walls flaking, the furniture covered in drop cloths, scaffolding for the painters everywhere but no painters. I nod toward a soaring, dirty window. "Look at that stained glass." Dad smiles and nodes. The desk clerk appears and we follow him. Dad stops by a wall that has wires curling out high up where apparel has been removed. "Maybe they could use an electrician, he says. He's serious: he would rather work on the place than just stay in it. Not his kind of thing—a vacation—even in the afterlife. He heads for the front desk to check in. I'm about to follow, but a guy about my age grabs my arm. "We're over here," he says. He is sly and jovial. I think he's a salesman. I know I've met him but can't think where. He leads me to some banquet tables set up in an L shape and covered with white table cloths. I've missed the meal, but there are still bottles with wine in them. I take a chair inside the elbow of the L. I feel trapped. Dad won't know how to find me. The guy who brought me here pours me a glass of wine. There are three or four conversations going on, none that I want to join. I drink some wine. It is a deep red, very dark and very sour.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

In this dream a young man of Asian descent takes careful notes as I detail symptoms of a health concern, a medical mystery of some kind, a puzzle. I’ve come to him for help in solving it. He is solemn, but deeply kind, attentive. He reminds me of many of the young men I worked with as a student advisor at the college.  There seems to be some kind of understanding between us that I once helped him. Now he will help me.

As we conclude our discussion he turns to leave, but then turns back to me with one last question:

“Tell me, do you daydream often?”

Do I daydream often? A smile spreads across my face. He may as well have asked if I breathe often.

“Yes,” I say quietly, “I daydream all the time.”

“Ah!” He brightens. He likes this answer, writes it down on his clipboard of notes. He disappears down the hallway, leaving me to wonder—

Have I given him the most important symptom of my malady, the key that will unlock the mystery?

Or have I simply spoken the cure?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Last night I dreamed the home invasion finally happened. Five men wearing dress suits and animal masks. Carrying rifles. They beat me with the butt ends of their rifles while I lay between the flat and fitted sheet. They took everything I owned, leaving me with an empty house. I could have called out to my husband in the next room, but I remained silent. Finally, I thought. Finally they’ve done what I’ve waited years for them to do. With this false sense of security, these possessions, I will never learn who I am.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

I climbed on board a bus that could have been a tram given its location along Kooyong Road.  A beautiful young woman stepped up behind me and as she passed the driver remarked on her eyes.  She winced as she sat down and I imagined she did not enjoy the way complete strangers threw compliments at her.
           ‘It could be envy,’ I said to her as she fumbled with her handbag.  She looked at me bemused.

‘The way he spoke of your blue eyes.  It comes across as a compliment but if it makes you miserable it might be rooted in some sort of envy, the sort your enemies direct towards you in disguise.’

‘Do you have enemies?’  I asked her.
 'One out of five of my teachers perhaps,’ she said.  ‘But not really.’

The tram/bus arrived at my stop unexpectedly and I had no time to finish our conversation, let alone to say goodbye.  I leapt up to pull the cord and stood in the front at the door waiting for the driver to stop.  But he drove on.  He seemed cheerful enough and I figured that as I was now standing directly beside him he would soon see to stop, but again he drove past the next stop.
‘I have to get off,’ I said and eventually at the third stop beyond mine the driver pulled up.

I was in West Richmond now well beyond my destination, my school, and I walked back in the direction from which I had come.

I needed to cross a wide road that stretched below train tracks.  It was dark and gloomy, an ideal nesting place for pigeons in its roof.  A place I would not want to visit by night but in my dream it was still early morning though I worried I might be late for school.  I looked down at my feet and noticed that on my black stockinged feet I wore an old pair of back patent shoes, shoes I had owned when I was in my early twenties, shoes though still serviceable that were now old fashioned.  I felt embarrassed at the thought that others might consider me conservative.  I would not wear these shoes the next day I resolved.

There was not much traffic as I stepped out into the middle of this road.  I could not be bothered walking all the way to the traffic lights, which I saw some way in the distance and out of my way.  I wove through this traffic easily but when I reached halfway, the cars that had sprinkled through slowly like Brown’s cows were now replaced by a convoy of fast paced motorbikes.  The roar of the engines echoed from the underside of the metal roof tracks on the rooftop.  I managed to dodge them and laughed to myself when I saw one old bike driver spit out his phlegm into the gutter.  The wind blew it back up at him and it landed on his coat lapel.  He almost veered off the road in an effort to wipe it off.

Serves him right, I thought.  Disgusting habit.  no sooner had I had this thought than a collection of bicycles streaked through followed by a number of mounted horses.  The road seemed an obstacle course and I wondered would I ever get through, or would I inevitably be knocked over.


My youngest daughter was organising a friend’s birthday party in my dream.  They had been in discussions all morning.  They could not decide on a venue.

I took my bicycle out for a short ride but as I looked into the distance and could see the rolling countryside with lakes and streams ahead I fancied I might take a longer trip.  The ground was wet and the roads slippery so after a time I decided to head back but not before I stopped off at a bicycle shop to check on the sturdiness of my bike.

           ‘You need new wheels’ the bike shop owner said to my amazement.  The bicycle was new.

           ‘Not today,’ I said.  ‘Maybe another.’

I rode off home and noticed that the parents of the girl whose party my daughter had been helping to organise had managed to lock themselves into a small building, which we called the Lodge at my old school in Richmond.  The lodge consists of two tiny rooms, one on either side of a tessellated corridor that run between two ornate cast iron gates.  The first leads onto the street, the other into the garden of the school.  In one of these small rooms, each the size of a large bathroom, I learned Latin in my final years of school.

The parents of the girl who was about to celebrate her birthday were wealthy.  They would spare no expense for their daughter’s party.  I worried about the venue and was alarmed to hear when they finally escaped from the lodge that their daughter wanted to have the party in the country.  We would need to drive for hours to get there and back.

My husband was unhappy about it too, but he could not object.  He had no say in the matter.

Then my husband and I were driving in our car in the country, in the town of Scarborough, on holidays.  We had a carload of children, our own and others, including another set of parents.  We had been driving for hours when my husband pulled into the carport of a house in Scarborough, which looked unoccupied.  At least it was clear at that moment that the owners were away.

           ‘You can’t park here,’ I said to my husband.  ‘It’s not our place.’  He shook off my concerns and went inside.  We proceeded to unpack.  I put on a full load of washing into the washing machine and another load of socks and smalls in a drawer in the bedroom that could also be used as a washing machine.  The group of us then walked through the back yard down some steps and onto the beach.  The house overlooked the sea.

I looked back towards the house before we reached the beach and realised that the owners of this house had returned.  They could not pull into their own carport.  Our car was in the way.  They would be incensed.  They were.

Not one of our group wanted to step forward but I told my husband we must and he and I went up to greet the owners and to apologise.

My husband was jovial and somewhat off hand.  ‘We thought the place was vacant.  We meant no harm’.

I was apologetic.  The male owner was a builder of sorts.  He carried on his shoulder a large bag of tools.  My husband tried to make small talk by admiring these tools, and the owner was half taken in, but only briefly.  He wanted us gone.  The owners, too, were preparing for a party, a large gathering of mainly older women for some sort of bingo night.

We went back inside and gathered our things together, including the load from the washing machine.  The man’s wife looked on unimpressed and their two children, both toddlers, played around us nonplussed.  We loaded up the car and told our lot to get inside when I remembered I had forgotten to take out the drawer full of the extra washing.

I had to go back inside.  I collected my clothes as the owners looked on disgusted.  I told them one of the cupboard drawers could serve as a washing machine.  Clearly it was not something they would do.

By now their guests had arrived and they were milling around and spilling outside beside a large outdoor table.  I used this table in order to gather together my still wet washing.  I was looking for a bag or some form of material in which I might collect together these small items, socks, bras and knickers.  I felt mortified as I bundled together my family’s wash at the table.

One of the guests, an older woman spoke to me kindly enough.  She did not realise I was an interloper.  I could see the owners scowling at me from the kitchen window.  And so my dream ended to the ringing of the alarm.