Number 13 Dream
This morning while struggling with that ‘do-I-get-up-and-write-so-as-to-accomplish-something-or-do-I-chase-sleep-feeling,’ I glance at myself with a different eye. I question whether or not I am a fraud. I teach people how to pull their books out of their heads/hearts and onto the page. This is what I do for a living, yet I’ve not produced a finished, published book in years.
Yes, I’ve finished a number of manuscripts. Six full length books as a matter of fact. I have not compiled and edited them though. They simply gather digital dust in the electronic membranes of my computers’ software containment devices. They’re stacking up like a runaway game of Tetris.
I then imagine me, walking away from the accusation of fraud. The vision of me stands quite clear. I know what I am doing. I know what I look like. Hey, I lay nestled in some sort of dream state, ok? Knowing what you look like is important – as I soon find out.
I walk away. Away from writing. Away from pressure. Away from questions. Away from accusations. Away from fear. Away from uncertainty.
People followed me. Lots of people. I note them clearly. They follow each serpentine zig and zag I produce. I want them to leave me alone. I note where writing resides. This may sound strange, and I assure you I do no drugs nor do I drink. I know my writing path involves walking back toward me.
Two me’s? So I continue to avoid me (the me where writing power resides) with my evasive walking. The people following me are likely book characters. The people appear quite focused. They dance in tune with my every step.
They hang on my directional changes as though they are part of me (the one running away). Thousands of characters are hinted at in my vision. Hundreds are present in my mind. It is as though they know before I do where my feet will land. Every single footfall which changes direction in any manner, they follow in perfect sync. There is no delay. No degradation of movement. Simply a flowing dance of walking away from myself and not knowing where to go and not knowing how to get there with all these characters in tow.
My characters do not herd me, yet I know that any single one of them will point back to me, the narrator, the one with which you are communing at this very moment. Then comes the odd observation, as if all this were not odd enough, which hits me like a feather bomb.
I am female. The me running away that is.
Black straight hair which falls past my shoulders and cradles a thin, attractive face. A lean, feminine body which knows how to walk. Isn’t it amazing how some women can walk and ooze that feminine mystique with no effort? They defy the law of conservation of energy or some such scientific law. You know the one where every motion requires energy of some sort. Some women can exude that womanly energy in their walks and mannerisms without one iota of energy spent.
In this muse-driven moment of contemplation of my writing demise and prerequisite plunge into the abyss of under-accomplishment, I recognize my femininity. I cease running away and walk directly back to me.
Looking at this now, I see the complexities wrapped up in the narrative I’m attempting to describe. No, I’m not a woman trapped in a man’s body. If I were, I’d be totally lesbian. So I would be a woman trapped in a man’s body craving other women. That’s too screwed up to even address.
No, the truth is, I have the ability to access my emotional side at any point in time and any circumstance. This is what makes me a good writer. I can access the softer, more beautiful side of who I am in an instant. Without effort. Without apology.
Another thing I draw from this experience is that I recognize epiphany and I often do not capitalize on the experience. All writers know to keep a pen and paper handy or some sort of writing device. My laptop was on the floor beside me when I woke. It slept as I craved to do, simply there at my disposal. Hence, I used my favorite writing tool.
Here’s the big take away. That beautiful raven-haired-me stops directly in front of my face, as if to say, “So, what the hell is it going to be? Are you going to lie there and grab another hour or two of forgettable sleep punctuated by a couple trips to the bathroom, or are you going to dance with me?”
She’s not quite so eloquent in her accusing stare. More like, “Motherfucker, if you back down again and opt for the easy way out of this, you injure us both.”
I do not wish to hurt her. Hell, I don’t wish to hurt anyone. And I recognize I no longer desire to hurt myself.
She just stands there. I half-heartedly agree to write. I show no movement toward my computer. After all, it’s cold here in Utah at oh-dark-thirty. My daughter keeps her A/C at 65 to make sure it stays cold, even in winter. My dark-haired self says nary a word.
Even though I say she speaks, her communication does not contain words. Those blue eyes and that raven hair and that knowledge of who I am says everything. She knows me better than I know myself.
My laziness exposed, I reach over and lift the laptop to its namesake. I’ve been writing this post while lying on my back with my knees upright and the urge to pee driving me to key faster. I’ve been marveling at my gender change in this dream. I’m marveling at the characters’ connection to her/me. I know that time is not real yet the measurement of time does denote something.
I see her now only as a movie reel scene. She drives my fingers and helps me along in this writing. We are in concert and she is happy with me once again. She knows and notes with sadness that I will shortly get up to pee. She knows I may not return to the narrative for a while.
Yet, as we key this, she whispers to me that her life is meaningless, without point or purpose, if I continue to choose to reject her. She needs me to live. She desires to live. She not only wants to live, she cries from neglect.
Her minion characters, the ones who drive her as mad as they do me, all morph into something beautiful, something ethereal, something mesmerizing, when she and I play. I lose her. I lose the better part of me when I turn her down.
She owns many descriptors. She’s my muse. She embodies my empathy. She’s everything I want in a woman and have not been able to find. She promises she’s that caring, loving tough girl who will find a way.
“Find a way where or out of what?” I ask her. She says it does not matter. Anything. She defines my creativity. My muse. My life. That part of me which silent-screams for me to step into life and make something happen. That part of me far too neglected, although with the volume of written material I’ve produced in my life so far, many would say I’m doing it. I’m successful.
Well, world, I am not, unless I continue to take up letters and form words which form concepts and storylines and do as Ray Bradbury told us all – to find joy within our writing selves and from that joy, impact our world.
I know this writing may read as insanity. In a way I suppose this written creation sounds crazy. It’s been said that writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia. I believe that to be an unfair accusation or observation. Writing is not like schizophrenia as much as it’s like Sybil and the many voices in one’s head.
Oops. She’s tapping me on the shoulder now, realing me in. Yes, I misspelled “realing” on purpose. She’s bringing me back to the real world. She’s telling me there’s no need to explain further. Those who will read with an open mind will get it. Those who will mock won’t.
None of what other people think changes her hand in mine. The seal-the-deal-girlfriend who strolls my path to harmony. The lover who goes ecstatically wild when someone suggests I go fuck myself.
She laughed at that last line and is begging me not to explain it to those slow of wit and depth. She’s as crazy as I want to be. A loon who loves laughter and pain and sorrow and joy because all make up the fabric of life and writing. She wrote that, not me.
She smiles at me a loving smile. The smile where someone truly appreciates your acknowledgment. She kisses me on my inner cheek. She loves me.
And I love her.
Write! Yes, I’m speaking to you – the reader! Dammit, stop screwing around and dodging your muse. I don’t care if your muse is male, female, Andromedan, alien, animal. Write. Connect with who you are. Write real. Write true. Write without apology. Let the naysayers come. They’re all stuck in their private hells of not knowing what connection to creativity can mean to your life.
We know the truth. We are a couple who fight over storylines and characters and concepts. We also walk hand in hand for our lifetime. We will be the lovers on the page. We will be the ones who not only enjoy deeply that passionate kiss, we will in fact achieve simultaneous orgasm when we complete a work worthy of our intellect and imagination. We even pillow talk afterward about what is next on our horizon.
“We need to end this one,” she’s urging at this point. I don’t wish to let go. She’s right of course. Seems she always is. I don’t mind that …much…