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Sunday, January 31, 2016

So it Goes

I had a dream a few nights ago.

It isn't unusual to dream, I hope. We all do it. Dreaming is the one thing that connects us even if the content of the dreams separates us. Some dream in Freud, some dream in Jung. And some of us, who are lucky, dream Nemo dreams.

It is rare I dream in such a specific way, but I assume we all have dreams each night, and we wake, and we move on. Some dreams--some rare dreams--linger.

I dreamt this.


A forest. There were redwoods and pine-needles. There was a smell, in-so-far as dreams have smells, of lavender and oak. There were leaves crunching beneath my feet that sounded like grunts. I was among friends. And the friends took similar steps across the leaves, which crunched and grunted.

"Almost there," some guy told me. Some Guy was all around me. He was all races and all sexes, and she at one point became four or five different individuals. And their feet crunched the grunting leaves. They were leading me to a specific place in the wood, which was a nice thing for them to do--I was grateful to be taken where they led me.

"Here," some woman told me. "Get inside." I got inside. The forest--with its glimpses of ocher sky, redwood and pine trees, crunchy-grunting leaves--disappeared, as did the friends who'd corralled me into this spot in the woods. A small metallic cube.

A door closed behind me. The door sounding like a crumpled grunting sigh.  I looked behind myself to discover, dreamily, that there was no door. There was only a solid greyness.

"We're about to disconnect the link," I was told. I looked away from the absence of the door previously there, and towards the voice currently commanding my attention. The voice was coming from a young man sitting in a chair fitted with a satellite. The satellite sprang from the back of the young man's chair like a confused mushroom. There was a beam of green light vibrating from the confused mushroom where a stem would've been more appropriate.


"The link." These words came from me. Suddenly I knew why I'd been brought to this cube, in the woods, across the grumbling leaves. "Now?"



The confused mushroom cut off its stalk. The green light stopped.

The chair sagged and the man rolled out of it like a soggy blanket.

In this dream, all I could think about was the metal room which had until then housed a green light shooting up. The green light was Vonnegut's works and ideas and intentions. Not kidding.


People have been reading Vonnegut for longer than I've been alive, and yet I had the stupid fucking dream that his work was to be beamed out--like some Voyager III--in a stream of green light. In the metallic room, when the green stream is shut down, there is a silence as if my ears have been removed and shipped to the Met just before curtain. It is a self-conscious silence. It is a silence you hear just before you fart in church.

Then, the person from the chair tells me: "Prepare."

My hair stands up. My hair makes a run for it.

The human in the chair says, "It's a result from the cut link. Electromagnetic. It will pass. Like everything else."

Then my hair settles. My ears settle. And there is nothing else but the invisible metal door, which opens as Kurt Vonnegut enters the tiny metal room. Behind him I can see the redwoods.


Vonnegut says thanks. Not to me, not yet. He says it to the people in the chair, which were first one guy, then a few guys and women, and are now just humans. In the metallic room, his voice echoes. I assume he thanked millions of times.


Here is where the dream gets embarrassing: I started crying. Perhaps my brain--sleeping but active--needed a good cry. But Kurt Vonnegut was standing there, in a metallic room which had been sending out a green stream of light just a few seconds earlier, and I wept like a baby. I fell forwards. He caught me.

The one thing about this dream I'm thankful for is that I didn't feel ashamed at any moment. Most dreams are about shame or humility or dread. Which is a shame.

I cried into my favorite author's arms. I bent forward, and he caught me. We were in a metallic room set up to beam his work, in a green stream, to other worlds. It was a dream, and it was one of the best dreams I've ever had.

I did meet Vonnegut once. In reality, he wasn't someone to catch you. But that's why we have Jungian and Freudian and Nemo.

That's why we have humanism, and the things that make us less than human. We are all here to be nice to one another. If it is a struggle to understand kindness, ask for help.


The most awful thing you as a human can do is to forget to ask for help.

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