Someone dreamt their eyes were pooling with blood. I had a dream I found a bottle of cologne with one of my friend’s name on the label, under which was printed Architect and Philosopher. A friend of mine is making a maps to the landscapes in her dreams. Last night I dreamt about a party with too many staircases. This was after the destruction of Chicago, a new canyon dredged to fill with ruins.
As I write this there is a square glass filled with writing implements on my desk, situated eight inches diagonally from my right hand. This glass was a Christmas gift given by a boss when I worked in an office four floors above where I now sit. This glass was a way of saying I know I’m supposed to buy you a gift, but fuck you. Sometimes waking from a dream I feel the world is telling me the same thing.
Inside the glass there’s twenty or so pens and pencils and markers that came from other dreams: a Micron 08 I once sketched my son’s face with, a Staples Hype highlighter that I colored in the squares representing my vacation weeks with, a BP Zebra F-301 mechanical pencil that I used to complete problem sets for Technical Mathematics 215, a black ballpoint pen with my deceased grandfather’s name emblazoned on it that I rescued from his 1990 Lincoln Town Car after the transmission went and I almost drove it into my house then decided wasn’t worth the cost of repair.
These are all dreams. None of them exist, but I can vividly recall them. Memories are the superstition we build our lives on. We all know America was never great. If you don’t then why the fuck are you reading this? None of your memories are more valid than that great lie.
There’s a lot of superstition surrounding dreams as well: you can’t die in a dream, there’s a right way to interpret them, that we can understand.
This isn’t an attempt to trick you. Surety is.
We’ve all had dreams we didn’t want to wake from. Many of us have had dreams we return to. A smaller group of us have learned to navigate those dreams, have become conscious of the dreaming within the dream. Spiritual teachers tell us this is a way of training for becoming conscious of the dreaming within this dream. There are many volumes dedicated accounts of those who’ve done this, been able to accomplish fantastic feats because they’ve fully integrated this awakening. Last night my daughter asked me what I would do if I could do anything. Anything, I replied.
The grief of death is the refusal to accept the beauty of the dead cat’s smile. The grief of death is the lie of memory, and your attachment to it.
How much of who you are is a lie? How much of who you are today is the remembrance of yourself congealing in the bathroom mirror? How hard is it to forget all the times you’ve been hurt? When was the last time you forgot who you were?
Be someone else tomorrow. Be conscious of the remembering. Interdict possibility before the approach of memory. Write yourself a note so you don’t have to remember this.