Old Freud says that dreams are the Royal Road to the unconscious. But lots of brain guys with more scientific orientations don’t think dreams mean anything; the brain while sleeping just farts now and then relieving pressure and these are dreams. But trying to make anything of them or find any meaning in them is about as stupid as trying to tell the future by looking at the guts of a sacrificial chicken.
But when I was going to see my therapist I decided I should look into my dreams just in case they had something to offer. First, though, as I have said, I couldn’t remember my dreams. To remember my dreams I had to tell my brain before I went to sleep: remember the dreams. But I guess my brain was anxious or worried about forgetting the dream because instead of just remembering as I had ordered it to do the damn brain insisted on waking up at any manner of ungodly hours, mostly somewhere between four and five in the morning when my dream cycle hit.
Sometimes I would wake up so suddenly that the waking up just wiped out the dream. Sometimes I could remember a bit of a dream but it was so pathetic it wasn’t worth remembering. Sometimes I would wake up with no dream but with an erection. I had not told my brain to wake me up for that but apparently on this issue had a mind of its own.
Sometimes I would get up and write the dream down in a book I kept for that very purpose. Here’s a dream from May, 1985; it’s a little dated maybe but a bit funny I think:
“I see a woman milking an elephant. To do this she needs a special rocking chair, very huge. Once she gets in the rocking chair and gets it going with a special stick she pushes against the ground the momentum of the rocking chair helps her squeeze milk from the elephant’s teats. Actually, I can’t quite see the woman. I see her feet just under the belly of the elephant. The chair is so huge her feet are way off the ground. A random cycle of violence has broken out. A kind of hysteria and children are killing adults. They walk around like robots and have tiny pistols. I am late on the scene and have no idea why these children with their tiny pistols are so riled up. I pull aside a curtain and enter a tent like room that has two huge elephant milking rocking chairs in it. But nobody is seated in the chairs. They rock violently, so hard, they leap into the air. A child appears and shoots another child with his tiny pistol.”
I have no idea what this fucker means. I am sure I could make something up. For example, obviously the tiny guns are tiny penises. Maybe the elephant’s teats are penises too. And women are milking those teats. Obviously there is a good deal of gender confusion in this dream. But it hurts my brain to think about it.
Maybe dreams don’t mean anything or mean just what you want them to mean. But I think they do contribute something. Without this dream I do not believe that ever in my life I would have written the words “milking an elephant” or come up with the idea of huge elephant milking rocking chairs.