Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Long Row of Happy Dead


Sometimes the only part of a dream that you'll remember is an arresting image. It's particularly important to attempt to illustrate these dreams if you want to penetrate what the dream means to you.

A Dream Image: This was part of a longer dream, but I don't remember it—except that there was a man, about 48, sitting in a chair. He had a few days growth of beard like a contemporary actor, and looked like one. He was someone's father. We went to where he was sitting and realized he was dead. Then we noticed a row of seated people with very large heads and over-sized, odd faces. They were all dead, leaning comfortably and companionably on one another.

Interpretation: Since what I remembered of this dream had no narrative, its meaning could only be unlocked by thinking about the image it created. As I developed the image a couple of things surprised me. First, the characters were indeed comfortable, and second, I chose to paint them in cheerful colors. Could these dead characters represent parts of myself that had had a “life” and were satisfied with what it had been, in other words, fulfilled? If that's the case they could indeed lounge comfortably and companionably, leaving behind the things I sometimes associate with the past: mistakes, failures, losses. It's as if they are saying, “That's over now.”

The one differentiated character is an actor, and aren't we all actors in our own life drama? He's “contemporary,” so he's been alive for me until this dream. My dream is telling me to follow the path of authenticity—the “actor” is dead, and that's a good thing. Since he was someone's father, he was instrumental in giving birth to the one who goes on, but he and his fellow dead, with their distorted heads (over-sized intellects) won't be going forward into my future. The light and bright colors tell me this is a happy development.

2 comments:

brenda Ferrimani said...

This is a really cool thing to do! Bravo! - If this were my dream, I might explore "Do I feel too comfortable?" - The characters look a little bored to me. They also seem to be colorful but pastel colors - not vivid colors. Vivid is connected to vitality and life and so I might explore if adding passion could brighten things up and bring things back to life...

Carla Young said...

Thanks for your comment, Brenda. It's helpful to get another "take" on the dream.

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