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On Dreams and Imagination

Something I've long been curious about is the great disparity between our 'waking lives' and the lives we lead whilst dreaming. We all dream--that is a pysch/biological fact, even for those folk who claim never to dream (how unfortunate that we don't recall most of our dreams, but how really sad not to remember any of them!). But what is really strange is that, other than a novelist like Dickens or a poet/artist like Blake, most of us are far, far more imaginative in our dreams than in our 'real' life. It seems even a dullard can show more imagination in his dreams than he could ever summon in his waking life.

Why is that? I've long wondered. Is there something about being awake that demands so much attention we never fully 'open up' our imagination? I mean, even daydreams-- and I daydream a lot-- cannot hold a candle to the vivid, wild, and often weird qualities of your average dream. For example, last night I dreamt I was at some huge gala for something or other (details do not always seem important in a dream) and I saw the tallest people in the world--maybe the Universe! Now I'm pretty tall--not quite NBA but close--but these people were 14 feet!!! I had to strain my neck to look up at them when of course I went up to talk with them (something I would do in real life: it seems one keeps one's personality  in a dream). There were about 7 or 8 of them, men and women all in their 20's and attractive--from what I could observe as I craned my head upwards. They were talking with one another in a couple of groups, as relaxed and gracious as kings and queens, or so I thought then. I told them I had trouble finding clothing in my size, usually having to go some Big & Tall shop, so I asked how they did it. Turns out they made their own clothes. I was about to ask them how they traveled, I mean, just getting in a plane or a car would seem impossible-- but I woke up. 

If humans tend to be more imaginative when they're unconscious and dreaming, then perhaps that is where all creativity springs from. For some reason I began writing poetry in my 60's after a 30 year hiatus, and they ALWAYS come to me, usually in the morning not long after I awake. And some must be worthwhile as they've been published by 3rd parties online/in print. Yet I could not sit down to write a good poem if my life depended on it. The poems have to come to me, of their own volition as it were. What I am left wondering is if they come from my unconscious mind or some deeper part-- my soul.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2019

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