In Dreams

I often write early in the morning, during that blissful state between being asleep and awake. I don’t even bother to rub my eyes but I do fumble around on the dresser for the familiar, smoothness of my writing pad cover and the nearest pen. If I can be bothered, I love writing at this time. It’s as if you’re semi consciously free writing and your brain feels more creative, malleable and fluid somehow. Writing doesn’t feel forced, it flows from the fingertips.Inevitably, the laws of nature kick in and that state wears off, you can sense it happening as you write. Of course, writing completely alert can be just as magical as writing in that hypnologic state but is there a way to make that state last longer? Maybe being hypnotized ?

I can’t count the number of times I’ve had a really vivid, crazy dream and wished I was writing it all down whilst simultaneously participating in said dream, so essentially there were two selves, one ducumenting and one fully entrenched in it. The idea being that neither’s experience is cancelled out or hindered by the other.

Salvador Dali spotted the potential of this idea. Like a lot of surrealist artists he was always searching for interesting techniques to help produce great work. An avid follower of Freud, Dali believed dreams and imagination were central to human thought. He began to research ways of mining that state and developed a simple yet effective method. After eating a full lunch, he’d sit out in the sun, place a metal mixing bowl in his lap and hold a large spoon loosely over his chest. As he drifted into sleep, the spoon would fall, land in the bowl loudly and wake him up. He’d be in that sweet sleep/wake state and produce work. He’d then repeat this method continuously

If we were to apply Dali’s method, I guess we could play around changing the contexts and modes of alarm until we found different versions to suit people individually. It could be post power nap at work, post all day shopping spree knackeredness, post good sex sleep.

The point is, there’s so much great writing material in dreams, sometimes other worldy. Somehow, you very rarely feel compelled enough to write those dreams down the morning after, because…Well, it doesn’t seem the same.

Irenosen Okojie