festive food fodder
One of my key sources of creative inspiration, my dreamscape, has been in overdrive the last two weeks. And I think it might have something to do with the food I've been consuming in the lead up to Christmas, perhaps even the time of the year itself.
Truth is I have vivid dreams most nights that have the coherency of an epic movie (and not of the B-grade variety where the cash has been spent on bigger explosions rather than a good script). Being able to dream lucidly whole stories is definitely a bonus (and partly explains why sleeping is one of my favourite past times). This probably also explains why I prefer writing in the fantasy and science fiction genres - they are after all the most obvious genres in which to 'translate' from dreams what would otherwise be alternative realities that are not logical when compared to the 'real' world. (Aside: I can hear all the realists cringing now, the sort of people who like documentaries and character driven movies set in their own backyard - is it wrong for me to believe that such folk lack some imagination?)
The last two weeks though have delivered not only epic dreams that have gone nuclear in terms of the action, but also the re-emergence of a recurring dream and a first time (erotic) dream about a fellow who works in my building who I occasionally see in the elevator. (Aside: the last of these dreams doesn't really need much explanation regarding its trigger - the fellow who inspired it is very easy on the eye and my sub-conscious mind decided to come to the party! Just have to deal with the likelihood that I will blush when I next see him around the building...)
The recurring dream perplexes me. In this dream, I am basically walking along a coastline (beaches and national forest), up an escarpment to a village at the top of the hill, along the streets where there are houses recently built, then across a large field (very moor-like), which is enclosed by a fence, to a large old white house that sits at its centre. Isolated. On the other occasions when I have had this dream, sometimes I manage to find myself inside the house and it is full of partially furnished empty rooms, the floorboards covered in dust.
This route and these houses do not exist in the real world - they are pure constructs of my mind. I like the way my mind can create new things and places to tell itself a story. Granted, these places are probably some Leggo amalgam of actual places where I have been (particularly given I grew up by the sea and spent much of my childhood summer months around Christmas at the beach), though it is still incredible how my mind's electrical impulses can generate an entirely different dreamscape from disparate pieces of the past.
I interpret the recurring dream to have some significance in terms of it representing a spiritual journey. (It reminds me of a recurring dream I had as a child/teenager where I found myself sitting at the centre of an otherwise empty floating white room with open windows along all four of its walls and sheer curtains dancing with the breeze flowing through the space.) It may be a symbolic representation of the meeting between my two states of mind - the rational and the irrational. (Alternatively, the dream may be a metaphor of how I am 'coasting'). The colour white is significant. The themes of being alone and emptiness more generally pervading the dream are significant also. I believe this is the story my mind is trying to tell me.
I made reference at the start of this blog to food and the time of the year. Context is important in making sense of anything. Really. It is the time of the year when I spend a couple of weeks with mater, who prepares traditional European provincial food and I eat healthy fine meals (this coincidently provides me with a perfect excuse to avoid the excesses of social functions that are pervasive at this time of the year because I can escape to home). It is the time of the year when I spend more time reflecting about my year that was, where I am in my life right now, and where I want to be. In regards to the latter, I am by no means unique undertaking such reflection if the evidence of a higher number of relationship break-ups and suicides during the festive season is any guide! (Aside: do not worry, neither of these events are likely to apply to me any time in the near future given my current relationship status and I remain well and truely anchored to this world.) So it should not be a surprise that my dreams have a more philosophical flavour to them.
And I translate the dreamscape stories into words in fiction that are mindful of their contextual origins. Every writer needs their compass. If we could write cliff notes in the margin in our books that writer compass might be more obvious to our readers though I take some pleasure in knowing that some time in the future some one will read my work in a way that bears no resemblance to how I expected my words to be interpreted. This is fine by me. Because how the words are perceived are as unique as how they were written.
I say let the overdrive take me to far away places in the dusty recesses of my mind.