I tend to remember my dreams reasonably well. I’ve also found that more often than not, I wake up in the middle of the night, and then go right back to the same dream I was having. I can even take a potty break, head back into bed and pick up where I left off. More or less, anyway; it’s not likely to be exactly the same dream, but then dreams are hardly static in the first place.
Last night, I slept for fifteen hours straight, which is an obvious indication of how deep into sleep debt I am. I don’t really sleep a lot, which is not to say that I don’t need to sleep, because I do. Most of the time, I just don’t seem to get around to it. I think that for most of the night — it felt that way, anyway — I was pretty much in the same dream.
(I woke up when a friend called me up and reminded me that we were supposed to go and catch Warren Ellis’ Q&A thing today since he’s in Helsinki now, and honestly, I just wanted to tell him to fuck off and let me go back to my dream. He insisted that I get up, and I did, but even that wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for the fact that my bladder was about to burst… (And the Q&A was pretty much a complete waste of time, too — not because of Ellis, but because the audience asked fucking idiotic questions, such as “why do so many of your characters wear black?”.))
The dream’s particulars aren’t relevant. I can’t remember the details too well now, anyway, just a collection of hazy scenes — laughing, kissing someone, being indescribably happy and content, the lies in the trainyard, the complete lack of emotion except for the murderous rage, brilliantly disguising myself with the wig that was on the mannequin head I found in a plastic bag from my pocket, putting on the black killing gloves, waiting for the bride and groom to arrive to the wedding party, being asked “are you going to kill her?” and replying “I’m not sure yet”, the leather tight around my fists, people paling at my approach, shooting at soldiers coming through the woods with a pump-action shotgun and dodging bullets in the snow, splitting the last skull wide open with the empty gun’s stock, the splintering wood digging deep into my wrist, the feelings of betrayal and rage and desperation mixing, everybody suddenly becoming Japanese, complete with kimonos and strange and significant concepts of giri, closure and relief… dream stuff. There was a chronology of some kind in there somewhere, too, but it’s gone now.
But the thing is — and I encounter this often — even though I don’t really remember what happened (you could figure out a storyline from the snippets above, sure, but you wouldn’t get right), I still remember — no, I still experience the emotional impact. I was content and happily empty in my recently spent righteous rage; satisfied in the sensation of fulfillment, complete with redemption and love and forgiveness and justification. I woke up feeling wasted and stupid and weirdly happy and sad, and despite the double-digit body count I had and the emotional wringer I went through in the dream, I would’ve been utterly content to remain asleep and dreaming. I couldn’t tell you if that tells me something about the potency of dreams or the state of my own life.
Whatever. The point is, it’s 7am on the Sunday morning now, and I should really be in bed, and I replay the few images I have left and revel in the emotions that spring up, feeling breathless and giddy and stupid. I don’t think I’m capable of such raw emotion in my waking life. And in a few days, even those images are likely to disappear; I’ll probably remember remembering them, but the images themselves — and the emotions that go with them — will be gone. In a year I may read this entry and not quite know what I’m talking about. I can’t write it down in any meaningful way, but sometimes I have the old dreams all over again much later, or I return to them and find that time has passed…
If I was given the chance to get between the sheets and go back in there and never come back, I would do so in a heartbeat. I’m vaguely aware that this prospect should probably terrify me at least a little.
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