Monday, May 24, 2010

The Gap-II

When I first met the witch, her arrival was like mist from the sea. She came to me in the underworld and had a different presence than the shades of the departed. The shades are like smoke from a dying fire, while the witch enveloped me in moisture. And cigarette smoke. Said she ran an island club for mariners, a strip joint, really, called “Sweet Dreams”. Yul and his crew, trying to make their way home after sacking Troy, stopped by the club for some recreation.

“I lead the Sweet Dreams onto the runway”, she began in her smoker’s voice, very close to my ear, “and see the hero of Troy and his men along the bar”.

“Now I’m an attractive woman, Ti”.

“I know”, I said.

“How would you know?”

“Because you’re attractive to me”.

“Well, in my golden gown I’m a knockout!” she continued. “I strut down the runway, sizing up the heroes, turn, toss my train behind me, and lead the Sweet Dreams back towards the glittering ball over the bar. Then the girls hit the floor for lap dances.

“I sat next to Yul and tried to get him to drink up like his crew, but he just sat there, bleary-eyed, the way salesmen look—distracted, and wouldn’t touch the glass of drugged wine. The others were out of it already, dreaming they were turned into pigs, which is no big transformation, really. But Yul would have none of it and was lost in a dream of his own.

“He asked me what time I got off. ‘Off from what’, I said. ‘Off from work’. I told him, and he said come by his boat when I was done.

“Well, his cabin on the boat looked like any salesman’s room I’ve ever seen—-clothes everywhere, half empty bottles of booze and god knows what else. He fumbles around the mess and emerges with the bottle he was looking for with a look of triumph on his face, the first expression of any kind that I had observed. I shared a glass with him and asked him what was his pleasure. Just a massage, it turns out, so he wasn’t much trouble. I left the towels in the tub when I left.

“Afterwards, he came around the club a lot. Always with that dreamy look in his eyes. His crew was dreaming of pigs, and he was dreaming of home. They seem to have settled in for a while. I told him that I could make him immortal, but he just gets that dreamy look in his eyes.”

The next time she came to me she brought Yul along. He was determined to go home, regardless of her witchery, and she finally gave up and brought him to me. He wanted to see his comrades at Troy amongst the shades, so I told him to put out some blood—gets them every time.

The shades hissed around the blood, and I heard him talking to Ace, the greatest hero at Troy, now just another shade. Ace had chosen the short, glorious life, and died young on the battlefield. Talking to Yul, it sounded like he was having second thoughts.

“What happened, Ace?” Yul asked. “You had it all but seemed to just give up after Pat’s death. We almost lost it all without you. Sure, you got Hector, but that was just your rage. You were never the same again.”

“The old man happened,” Ace replied. “Hector’s father came through our lines from Troy to beg for his son’s body. Reminded me of the father I left behind, the mortal I left for an immortal mother.”

The goddess again. Ace was blinded by the light as much as I. But I heard him confess to Yul that now he would rather be the lowliest slave on earth than lord of all the underworld. I guess his time with the shades had shown him that all that glory was just a dream. It would take more years of wondering for Yul to realize that and finally go home.

So there’s a glory gap along with the desire and knowledge gaps that are filled with dream. All my heroes realize this in time, some in this life and some beyond. It’s like our myth of Narcissus that the Doctor was taken with along with the story of Rex. Narcissus’ can’t bridge the gap between himself and his image in the water and pines away until death closed the gap. He is transformed into the flower with his name—a dream image to fill the gap.

How can a blind seer have insight? How can he dream? I could see before I was blind, was female before male, alive before dead. But we all were. Dreams come from that fuzzy pool of possibilities or the divine, which is the same for us all. You just have to be tuned in.

Perhaps it is easier to dream in the underworld. What else is there to do? The shades are still drawn to blood, to life’s juices like desire and glory. For those who respect the gap, dream is all that’s left. The immortals envy the juice of mortal life and seldom dream. When they do it’s the dreams of the Doctor from Vienna. Somehow a mortal journey, not necessarily heroic, is required to cultivate dream. Again, it takes respect for the gap.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Gap-I

They come to me in dreams. Why I’ve never known. Blind and sexually challenged, I still get the call. Maybe they think I’ve bridged the gap—between the sexes and otherwise. If they only knew what a curse that has been, thanks to the goddess. She meant it as a curse, and it is. The dreamers feel that they are lacking—the gap and all, but believe me they are blessed. If they would just leave it alone, the gap, that is. Play with it like they did as children and later in their dreams. That’s what dreams are—grownup play. And the gap is the playground.

“Ti”, she said, the goddess, that is. “Who gets it off the most, male or female?’

That’s a no-brainer, and I told her, and was blinded for my trouble. The female is made for passion, both sexual and vindictive.

The dreamers believe that blindness creates insight—a feel for the dark, for the gap. I do spend a lot of time in the dark, but my only insight is to trust it. They want answers. “Where did I come from?” “How do I get home?” Heroic questions in the dark.

That Doctor in Vienna made a science of insight, of seeing in the dark. Called it psycho something. In my day we had the tale of Psyche and Eros. Psyche was soul and Eros, desire, same as in Vienna. Eros seduced Psyche in her sleep, like in a dream. The Doctor in Vienna made his reputation with dreams, but he didn’t put much stock in the divine. Our Eros, like my goddess, was divine.

The divine showed up in dreams all the time in my day. We went to sites like Epidaurus to incubate healing dreams from the divine. Our great poet, blind also, sang of divine intervention in the dreams of warriors at Troy. I suppose the Doctor had no place for the divine in his science.

The Doctor in Zurich had more tolerance for the divine. Archetypes he called them, but science had become fuzzy by his time—fuzzy and uncertain. The Doctor in Vienna soon lost patience with the one in Zurich, mostly about the divine, and the psyche has been split ever since. Not our Psyche, their psyche—our Psyche was swept away by the divine.

The gap is more at home with the fuzzy science than that of the Doctor in Vienna. All that uncertainty makes space for play, for dreams. Before science wanted answers, just like the heroes that came to me. Uncertainty makes the gap creative, like our poets song. My heroes learned that in their dreams.

My first hero solved the riddle of the Sphinx, but he came to me for answers. That Doctor in Vienna made a big deal of Rex, that’s what I always called him. The Doctor was hung up on Rex’s desire for his mother. Hell, Rex was stuck with her after getting rid of the Sphinx; his mother was the Sphinx’s priestess, for god’s sake. Priestesses are as much a pain in the ass as goddesses.

Rex could solve the riddle, a universal question; it was the personal that stumped him. His kingdom a wasteland, he came to me to learn his secretes and restore his kingdom. The hubris of the hero! He wanted insight into the dark and came to me, the blind seer.

The Doctor in Vienna based his psyco whatever on seeing in the dark. He used dreams, just as I do, but he finds answers in dreams, I just play with them. I tried to get Rex to play, but he wanted answers. He should have played with his dreams, because the answers drove him to blind himself like the goddess blinded me—a lot more bloody, but the result was the same. So much for insight!

In one of Rex’s dreams he stabs his father with a sword and waits for the old man to die. The reality was different—the old man had hit Rex in his bum foot, a result of the old man’s attempted infanticide long before the parricide. They pass on the road to Thebes, just two travelers doomed to pass each other on the road. Rex was pretty sensitive about the bum foot and lost it, right there on the road to Thebes. Killed the old man in a rage, not cold and calculating like in his dream. The guilt he felt was in the dream, and I tried to get him to play with it, but as I said, he was pretty sensitive. The Doctor in Vienna got worked up about the parricide, but he was pretty sensitive too.

The other one came to me in the underworld, the place of dream. He had laid Troy to waste and was trying to go home. That witch brought him to me, but she’s another story. I spoke to him in dream images, hoping he could play better than Rex. When he got home he had to bury the oar of his sea voyage and tend to his people. I also told him to not harm the livestock of the sun god, but they never listen. He ended up sailing around for years before washing up, naked and alone, on the beach of his island home.

Rex had to wander also, blind, led by his daughter, until he finally found peace. I tried to get my heroes to play with their dreams, and perhaps their wanderings were just that—dream play. Whatever, they were the wiser for it. The Doctor in Vienna found that his psycho journeys took longer than he thought.

The Doctor in Zurich wandered for years in his dreams. After he broke with his professional father, the Doctor in Vienna, a less bloody but just as traumatic act as Rex’s, he descended into the underworld like the hero who came with the witch, and encountered the shades, or archetypes as he called them. So perhaps my heroes wandered in their dreams also; the results were much the same.

So what is real and what’s a dream, what is mortal and what’s divine? Blind and in the dark, it’s all the same to me. It’s all just play. That’s why they keep coming to me for insight, I suppose. The fuzzy scientists with all their uncertainty said that the real emerges from the possible like mist from the sea. Seems like dreams do the same, mortals too—manifestations of the divine.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Oil Spill Dream

Recently I dreamed of a numinous, giant pelican, some sort of divinity figure. The pelican is the state bird of Louisiana, where the oil spill is threatening Gulf wildlife. The pelican is also the mythological bird that feeds its young with its own blood.

Any oil-spill or other disaster dreams lately?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Love & Sex

This weekend is my daughter's first wedding anniversary, and I dreamed I was listening to her lament her past love life. I got tears in my eyes & told her,"I have found that you have to link love & sex."

Earlier in the night I had a dream assignation with an old flame and later discussed with her whether we should leave our spouses for each other. We agreed that money wasn't the issue; "Was it worth the effort? People will be hurt." I said.

How do you link love & sex, not just on your anniversary, but every day, in your dreams or not?