“No,” says they. “It is not meant to be.”
“Pitiable pity,” replies the dreamer.
Dreams are devilish creations. Who can tell another what a dream truly is? A child might say it is a movie that played through their heads after a long day of play. Years later, the same child, made cynical by the life of little play, having had to play false roles, may very well tell you it is the redirected expression of unfulfilled Id impulses when one’s mental defenses are lowered in REM sleep. The ones that have suffered in brief eternities may tell you it’s the only point when life is not falling apart. The hopeless romantics might say it is a confirmation of the one they have chosen as their ideal. Optimists say it was what can be made into a reality, but, really, who listens to them? But what will dreamers tell you of their dreams? Those whose spirits have been kindled into a flickering and wanton want, those that have had their souls ignited in unbridled passion, and those that have fanned the gentle embers into forest fires – what do these unlucky fools have to tell you about dreams?
Why, they will tell you that dreams are oceans they are bound to waddle in. To most others, sleep and its child, dream, are the escapes from reality into a fantasy life to do with as they so please, but to the dreamers, these dreams are prisons. An interesting statistic to point out here would be how inmates often sleep for sixteen hours a day in order to drip out the purposelessness of their existences. Dreamers, though, might forever have their hands cuffed by their desires. All matters of the world they live in are testaments to the idea that they ought to give up their dreams and pursue something that is obtainable, is logical, is rational, has a future in it, is stable, can bring them ease, and can make them independent. The conversations between dreamers and all others is like David and Goliath; yet where, oh, where is that godforsaken stone?
“No,” says they; “don’t waste your time writing. If you were meant to publish something, it would have happened by now! I know someone who had a book out by the time they were sixteen.”
“Pitiable pity,” the dreaming writer replies (or, rather, scribbles secretly); “what has all those around me either strike into my bleeding pen with contempt, or provide this charity of advice. Do they not know how my path is visible by the bleak shine of the waning moon alone? Or of how the speedy streaks of dawn reach me far too quickly, earlier than it does to them? I would behead every rooster if that would still the glowing sun for another hour.”
“Stop,” says they; “that’s not music, it’s a fade and a hobby you’re putting too much time into. Get a real job and putting away these rags. I think I’ll talk to my aunt; she has a clinic running nicely and she would be kind enough to employ you as a receptionist, even with all those tattoos.”
“Wait. What?” the dreaming musician replies (or twists into a vocal, really); “man, what rank-ass chicken shit are these old dogs feedin’ me? What do they think? I ain’t doin’ this as some half-brained get-rich-quick scam. This is me. My verses are all that I am, all that I think and see and breathe and believe. Music saved my life. I gotta blow up like I’m moon-dancing over landmines, man. I ain’t nothin’ without a beat in my headphones.”
“Oh, quaint,” says they; “but, really, a five year old finger-painting could do something similar to that if given a reference. And it’s not like there’s many job prospects for someone who paints. A studio for rich, old people’s portraits or something like that is all you can hope for. Wouldn’t something like – I don’t know – architecture be better? I mean, obviously, you can draw, right?”
“Blast,” the dreaming painter replies (actually, paints in harsh shades); “Is all that I create merely folly and a passing of time to those that see it? Does my effort through this brush come forth so weakly that they laugh and belittle it?”
Amongst the worst words is when they say, “Well, if it really is art, as you say it is, why don’t you just explain it to me?”
“No, you fools!” they all cry out; “my art is not meant to be deciphered by some dusty old fart in a chalky classroom. The critics of it are no one to me, for their approval, or lack thereof, does not play even the most miniscule part in my satisfaction. I have not created this for you to try and superimpose onto me once more. Heresy! Profanity! Vulgar and ugly! I have poured out the sounds of my head’s raven, taken wisdom from the night whisperings, refined and remade the monstrous life into the appreciable and tender through the power of thought and beauty. Take it away from my hands and take my soul with you. These are not confessions to a pulpit, but the walls that divide and protect my identity from those of you that seek to hinder, command, devise, restrict, and control. I grant this to you, so that you of burning spirits and great minds may take from it what speaks to you and create further. This is our history, our culture, our religion, our hope, our food and drink.”
Dream, dream upon these black skies lit with stars that should color them in amorous lights. Dream upon the books that carry you into half-truth images, and hide you under the shadows of memories twisted by imagination to the heart’s want. Dream upon the music that can spark into your chest the hope of accomplishment, and that can burn away your fear, guilt, regret and insecurity. Dream on the paintings upon whom you gaze and see reflections of your own becoming and unbecoming, or whose nature is powerful enough to leave the mastermind in you speechless and inspired.
Never let go of those that hold the potentiality to inspire, stimulate, motivate, and excite; to awaken your hidden hearts, to dig up your unloved desires, to make you stir crazy, which give you the courage needed to chase after the illogical; woo the unattainable, dance with the unexplainable, live out of the bounds of the waking and dull, and for evermore drown in the ocean that could consume your life with its unforgiving waves. To rise to the heights of the stars that fill your beloved sky, dive into the depths where success can only come from the unending, yet ephemeral, swim. Indeed, you must know the difference between the realm of fantasy and the rejection-bound reality, and to carry the former upon the latter and replace it must be the goal.
Dream so powerfully that what you see through the eyes of your mind becomes an entity that walks alongside you and speaks to you of what you must do. You must. Think and you shall live; dream and you shall be alive. Then become so evolved in character and energy of what you seek that the dream-you begins to dream that they are you, and you dream no more, for you awakened yearning has been put to rest by realized reveries.
Admire others. Find in all those worthy some mettle of greatness, unmatchable but sparking a chase all the same. Give to yourself a goal, one that comes without a road or plan, and seek out the ways to it. You shall find fissures that wish to swallow mammoths, skies that rain down with storms to part open mountains, beasts that may swallow men as if they were bite-sized hors d’oeuvres and savages that will be so terrified of you, your visions, and your language that they will attack with sharpened wood and bulging clubs. Once you survive all these trials and tribulations – for those that do not survive have not dreamt, but fancied in folly – you shall be the Spartan warrior magnificently standing upon the hill of their victories.
Love: there be human invention as demanding and empowering as love. Love art, love persons, love your own self. Love your ability to hate yourself, for it shall let you grow. Love your ability to let another conquer over you, for it shall let a royal chalice pour out a rich, red fluid, which will take away from you all that it gives you. It will give you empowered colors, and steal them off as the last drop leaves your lips; it will give you a peaceable temper, but burn into your romantic soul with tipped arrows, yet it is also the balm that heals you; it burns, ignites, and rewrites all you know. The unchangeable becomes childish stubbornness if considered strong. The unmovable meets the unstoppable, and is destined to be overcome.
Weave around yourself the people that are moved by your works, and the ones that rival your passion; keep close to you the muses and servants of Apollo, and never lose sight of those that shoot you down. You are your star player, the thread of life that ties tightly the imaginary and the actual. Spin in it into inconceivable fables, draw it into unhindered fictions, capture wild passions, and absorb the lullabies of twittering birds and wind-shaken strings. Then, will you have made yourself the most efficacious dream catcher.
[Photo credits: It’s me, please don’t sue.]