Wednesday, December 31, 2014

In my dream I was watching an opera on television. Already this was strange, as in waking life I'm utterly uninterested in opera. It appeared to be a nineteenth-century Italian opera. A pair of twins—short, fat, bald, dark Sicilian-looking men in Renaissance costume—were singing an aria in unison. I knew that they were singing about guilt, but I don't know whether this was because I understood the words or was familiar with the libretto. Then I realized that one of the twins had just realized that the other twin was not his brother at all, but rather a manifestation of his own guilty conscience.

At this point, Roberto Benigni, the Italian comic actor, appeared on stage singing the same aria. He seemed startled and upset by the presence of the bald twins. He made exaggerated comic gestures that signaled his fear, as if in a silent film comedy. He ran to the back of the set and hid behind a curtain, then peeked out at the twins with an ambiguous smile on his face. At this point I could tell that Benigni had realized that the twins were not real people, but rather representations of his own guilt. This liberated him to leap out from behind the curtain and continue singing his aria. The twins had disappeared. 

The perspective in the dream then shifted from the stage set on TV to the room in which I was watching the program. There was another man in the room, sitting in a chair with his back to me. He was a large, bald man. I had no idea who he was.

"What am I feeling guilty about?" I said to the back of the man's head.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A longstanding, recurring dream about tornados appeared in a new form last night. This time it came in waves, and I was caught guard down with nowhere to be except in the place I was standing. I lay on the floor and waited...

photo by Elizabeth Bryant