In the Manner of Dreaming

I had a dream two nights ago about being late to meet Mark at a theatre in Burlington, VT. That? Simple wishful thinking, on a number of levels. From there, it gets more complicated.

I was forced to park the car seven or eight blocks away from the theatre, and trot up the hill to the University, past a row of three-deckers, very similar to the ones I once passed walking to and from my old apartment, outside Davis Square, Somerville. Using the reasoning of dreams, I grabbed a tricycle from the back of my car to help me get there faster, but it didn’t work, which meant I was stuck carrying it.

As I approached one of the three-deckers, someone called to me from a third story to come up. It was a friend from college. We’ll call him Burnsie. As I trudged, carrying a tricycle, up his front steps, he burst out of the door to tell me he was finally in a film! I hugged him and said congratulations and how’ve you been-all the things you might say, hearing that news from someone you haven’t seen in years–never mind that he’s a lawyer in real life.

Suddenly, and I do mean suddenly, in the manner of dreaming, another friend from college was on the porch, inviting me to come to their party. We’ll call him Roo. I told them I was late for the theatre, but could I leave the tricycle on their porch and pick it up later? Just then, a few more college friends, Fibby, Petay, and the Burger, ran past me on the stairs laughing like hyenas. Again, Roo invited me to the party. This time, two of my old roommates, Beryl and Shepherdess Y, come barreling out of the apartment, and they run off up the street.

I find myself (love the lack of transitions in dreams) walking towards the University again, only to discover that Beryl is missing, but Shepherdess Y has found our friend Becs, and we are all on our way to the theatre.

We run into the theatre, which has a gift shop/book store at the top of the grand staircase, and while Y and I head for the entrance, Becs goes to buy something. There’s a bell ringing, and the performance has already started, but Y forces her way through the screen door (yes, screen door), and we discover that Mark is there waiting for me, and our seats are near Becs and Y’s seats.

We sit, and I see I’ve lost my purse. Just as I’m whispering that I’ll find it later, the alarm goes off and I wake.

What’s odd is that I was left with the sense that my friend Glenn, who died four years ago, has been talking to me. And he wasn’t directly in the dream. Just the sense that he might have been there, in the corner of my eye, cracking wise and laughing loud, always listening, quick to embrace, lingered with me while I was getting ready to go to work. It lingered throughout the day. I get those feelings pretty rarely, but when I get them, I try to pay attention.

I’m not religious, and I’m not sure about anything, but I can’t believe that the essence of what makes us so gorgeously human is lost entirely when we die. In which case, why not be open to the idea that my dear friend plays dream architect from time to time? The dream, and feeling of not being entirely alone with my thoughts, made what might have been a truly awful day more bearable.

If there’s a better way to keep a friend’s memory alive, I don’t know it.

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8 responses to “In the Manner of Dreaming

  1. I love this post….I love that you remembered your entire dream (which I rarely do) and that you could actually describe it understandably (which I never can!).

    I totally believe that we can “talk” to old friends and others we miss through dreams. Too many of us have the experience to say it’s not possible.

    • I only remember the ones I have right before I wake up, and more specifically the ones I have after I wake up in the wee hours and then go back to sleep. The Post-Pee Dreams.

      I almost always remember the ones that are “realistic” or feature people I don’t normally see or talk to often.

      I figure blogging them is the closest I’ll ever to to a proper dream diary. And I get to share the crazy! Bonus!

  2. Shepherdess Y would appreciate that moniker and the visual on the laughing like hyenas is pretty perfect.

    Most of my vivid dreams involve me royally screwing up imaginary tasks at work. Either that or leaving my purse in various places. I like yours much better.

    • She wrote me a letter one summer returned addressed as such. It stuck in my head.

      You need to give yourself a break, love, your dreams are stressing me out!

  3. What a great post! I wish I could remember my dreams that vividly. The only ones I ever remember are the really really bad ones. I even remember the bad ones from when I was very little. Never the good ones though…they’re always fuzzy and nonsensical.

    • I remember, viscerally, the recurring nightmare I had as a child. Perhaps one day I’ll share it.

      When I have the dreams, I try to write them out as soon as I wake up, so they don’t get lost. Often the scribblings become posts later on.

  4. Sometimes I just feel like my grandma’s there watching and laughing. Because she’d be laughing. In a good way.

    What’s wrong with that?

    Although I wish she could get rid of my nightmares.

    • Nothing wrong with that in my book!

      My grandma? She loves me, but if she’s watching over me? She’s perplexed by a lot of things… Shaking her head in wonder, but loving me just the same.

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