I am a love of that I am a reflection and emanation. Kisses under the stars. Tall grass reaching for our bodies. This figurative heart is also the lips of Nuit.
I am suspended in Time and Space. Hanging from my foot, I feel the rush of blood to my head. I am Red at every extremity.
I offer up my heart as a torn entity. In my struggle between the binaries, I express both forms simultaneously.
I am captured by Life. Celestial forces pull at my chest and wrap me in electromagnetic fields. These forces are hands in my flow, attempting to redirect. When my eyes close, stars explode behind my eyelids and the fire rises within me.
Caught in a sea of darkness, I see my monsters and the spoils of war float by. Temptations to which I submitted mimic the color of the bleeding sun. The rope is within reach. I seek to extract myself from this Ocean of bruise-blue and this Sky of blood tears.
One foot on a black hole, another on the sun that is slowly being sucked in, I stand, a knife in one hand, with broken skin and bruised body to face the shooting stars and Windows of opportunities floating in Outer Space.
Masked I am: all Blue and smirking.
Fires and serpents at my feet that I cannot fight: my hands are tied and my arms spread wide. There will be no yelling through this duct tape. There will be nowhere to move when the archers take aim at the bulls eye marked on my chest. A phantom heart resides in the background, with the rainbows peeking from the storm clouds and the incentive on which I am to focus.
Tied up in electricity, I cannot help my fascination with the fire butterfly in front of me.
A hand emerges in the heavenly light. Inside its palm is an eye that cries for a reason that I do not know. The walls of this room have no beginning and no end. The doorway is through the flesh, and the night sky can be seen out my window.
I am bound in the colors of Fire, though I don the colors of Water. I reach through my element to the one that binds me, never allowing the physical abomination I face to shake me. I even ignore the easy way out.
I stand in front of an explosion. It is not for others to know if I initiated it or not.
Locked in a space I can reach through, I peer into the Unknown. Perhaps I care little to use the key I know is there to unlock myself at the present moment, despite the water slowly rising in my cell.
An angel stands in a stream of Water and Light. All that she emits conspires to spell out your name.
Perhaps I look much like a leprechaun among the flora. Yet I sit within the constructs of this world, laughing all the time in the face of Death.
My strength keeps me hanging on and glaring into the face of my opponents.
I am both the malformed entity with dragon wings and the one that loves such creatures.
The epiphanies I come to are etched in my skin. I write my Truth on my body for all to see.
The saga presented in the beginning continues… lovers on the beach, hand in hand and skin to skin. There are two fish I know so well that keep us adhered.
He looks like a nazi, with anger and coldness to match. I am naked before him, coming out of the Water to face whatever may be waiting for me in the blood of the setting sun.
Within me thrive beauty, music, life, fantasy, destruction, innocence, enchantment and growth.
Beyond Time and these cities of Men, we reside in the clouds together, as forms of what we can conceive.
Possessed by something else entirely, my eyes are now in reverse.
I will break through that which holds the key in order to get it.
These images and forms are cast in beauty and pale pink and live within alien landscapes.
I see. I listen. My mouth is shut.
All incarnations were called to join in one room. I was lying on the floor. The first to arrive included the Angelic, the Demonic, the Primal, the Sullen and the Fantastic.
One of the stories: The hunter holds his fallen love.
Within my eyes, his image is never really gone. The fires and finely sculpted body, complete with the Mythical implications, still burn my eyes.
I am leaving. I am taking this key and locking the door behind me. I know not what the Path holds for me, but I see vague images of Lovers, Guides, Demons and the cloak of Night.
This Djinn is too sultry to not become captivated.
A target for some unknown archers, I sit with a crown on my head and scepter in my hand. My throne is stone and these blues and violets are so heavy this time.
Where Ocean, Sky and Moon meet, the Goddess emerges. She absentmindedly creates whirlpools with her fingers as she is so lost in her own head.
Another of the stories: This time she cries out among fallen trees as she holds her lifeless Lover in her arms.
Incomplete: A fire dancer and a woman meet.
He enters from the back door. He is cast among shadows and holds clenched fists. The bare light bulb swings above my head, and all I can do is look at the ground.
In the green-blue haze, a new creature emerges in the face of dragons and clown-faced skeletons.
Laughing ‘til tears spill down my face, a rainbow wash of entities spring forth from the subconscious. She touches my head while this one dances by my shoulders. I see the ones I know from dreams and the One we shall all know on our last day.
Incomplete: Her eyes are new and fashioned by the magic he weaves. Faces, jewels, symbols, and gifts float from his spirit to dress her as he wishes.
The Witch spins and weaves, playing with Infinity. Her tools are represented. Their fear is evident.
Fangs materialize over her. She is blue and black with Death entering her eyes, spiders crawling up her body and serpents reaching for her. A hand from below reaches through her chest to pull her down.
The Rogue Alchemist meets the Eye in the Sky. He masks himself in the presence of the Eye. The flow of Power is both ways, from him to the Eye and from the Eye to him. The water is blood and the sky is fire. His totem, the Raven, responds to his calls.
Incomplete: This Devil has maces fastened to his wrists. The poison plant people and fire woman appeal to him.
A boot squashes the sun. This man with the hammer hand falls under rain while snakes turn to flowers.
I ran and exploded into pure energy. On the other side, I emerged as a beautiful Faery from a red flower.
My totem speaks; he brings some Faery friends.
The Bull King comes to greet us. We become possessed: everything tainted red and blue.
Her gown eats the floor and her throne eats the sky. She sits with a cat on her lap. Her eyes have no pupils.
Abstract: Colors! A tree hand reaches for a pear. A sinister goatee is the stem to the pear. Eyes cry or protect. Hearts are flowers that birth spirals. Violet fire burns in the corner.
A portrait with a loving glow.
A boy sits in the corner. The shadow he casts creates a hungry woman.
Close-up of fascination.
The primordial Beach and Creation.
Elven couple by Water.
Abstract: Green man covered in occult symbols with a snake arm is distracted by the tongue of a half-face woman. She is hanging in the air by a neon eye as her face also emerges from a psychedelic tree. From the tree hangs a man in a noose and flowers grow. A butterfly with eyes flies by. A night Faery dances on spirals of Love next to the Raven of the Night.
A figure in a purple cloak approaches the light at the end of a maroon hallway of mirrors and torches.
A redhead by a brick wall.
Abstract: Happy, neon fish-face swims under the cartoon dog with a genie lamp for ears. A pink and purple Faery Steed is vaguely recognizable.
Abstract: A blue eye has eyelashes of feathers from which hearts trail. The hearts flow into cotton-candy clouds that pass over the full moon. These same colors spiral into fires in the corner, over which, “RED MEAT” is written. RED MEAT is at the foot of the bed, which remains unmade. Zzzzs trail off to the door, beyond which, the cat explores a tunnel. Dreamers’ thought-bubbles contain “X,” which runs into a path leading back to the blue eye. Clovers and clubs hang in the background, along with dancing plant people.
The Cosmic Jester peers into the ring of Existence, where pregnancies, births, deaths, reincarnation occurs. The lotus flower sits within the heart, that ends in Infinity. “ZERO” creates its own trails in the sphere. The Eye sees “SOUL.” The Jester smiles as the Dice at the end of his hat reflect in his eyes. Sun, Moon and Stars are all contained in his silly hat. Behind him, the Goddess stands among spirals of Creation.
A comic strip of a night of drunkenness.
Portraits of my friends and a coffee house conversation.
1st panel: I’m wearing a t-shirt that says “RAGE” as I crush cars, destroy buildings and burn people. 2nd panel: My face contorted in anger, I am fantasizing about throwing punches at some choice people.
A green-eyed man.
Fishies kissing my toes as I stand with a flower in hand, balancing against a tree and a toe in the pond.
Goddess(/I) emerges from a water lily. The full moon and a water snake are behind her.
Abstract: A cat hangs out in the clouds as a message in a bottle travels through the water below. Flowers spontaneously spring from the water, which gets kissed by a fish. Balloons soar upwards from the road with a cartoon car. A strawberry in the sun is dipped in a chocolate well.
Abstract: A woman’s face covers the page. There is the sun in her eyes. A fire butterfly passes over an unmade bed. Ice cream cones and cherries are directly above the bed, being licked. The moon makes music from the clouds. A cat is made from the letters in “MEOW.”
Realism: Tree Frog
Realism: Snowy Mountain Lion
Faery sitting on a pentacle. Lizard face eating a flaming ball on a fork.
Man emerges from a flower. A snake wraps around his waist. The sun is in the sky and a heart-shaped woman’s face with puckered lips is in the background.
A woman (me) from the waist down, in a mini skirt and heels. Young, hot man’s face in the corner reacting.
Infinity symbol wrapped around a crescent moon.
Auntie Daisy wraps her hand around another glass of white wine. Her dark purple matte nails tap nervously (or impatiently) almost immediately after touching the glass; her face doesn’t agree with this gesture. Stunningly white teeth bore from upturned, burgundy colored lips glisten like pearls under the dim kitchen lighting. The sides of her eyes are creased as she laughs until the other person blinks or turns away, then some heaviness leaks through her expression. All the married women over forty see loneliness in Auntie Daisy’s face. All the married men over forty see insecurity. The children see sadness sometimes, or at least something they know they would like to help abate. I hear the teenagers comment that she is “crazy;” they don’t respect her as an adult.
Daisy is coming up on her fortieth birthday. She has never been married and has no biological or adopted children. When she is not around, the family gossips about these facts. Daisy likes to travel and drink wine. She keeps up with the news and entertainment. Of her sisters, Daisy is the only one who seeks out conversations with people of all demographics, treating them as an equal regardless of age, gender, educational, economical or cultural differences (to a point). She is the middle child of three, and she was always the favored daughter. The eldest found a husband to provide for her; the youngest supported herself though she too found a husband. Though Daisy had a steady career she seemed to almost enjoy, which should (in any reasonable person’s mind) be sufficient to support her lifestyle, Daisy’s father often pumped money her way. This charity was not always in response to a request. Members of the family had assumed different reasons for the father’s generosity.
The sisters greet each other with smiles and warm hugs. They talk about how wonderful it is to see each other and how they should really make an effort this year to see each other more than just for the holidays. Food is eaten, wine is sipped, hands are alive with expression and joy, heads nod in agreement during conversation. People mill around the rooms of the house, sharing love and stories. When Daisy is in the other room, sometimes snarky comments or condescending laughs escape mouths. I wonder if she hears them. And if she does, does she care?
People have a hard time really listening to Aunt Daisy. Who listens to a forty-year-old, never-married, childless woman who works fair hours at a job she almost enjoys and travels the world sipping wine and keeping up with events while enjoying the comfort of Daddy’s cash cushion once she arrives back home?
My cousin, B, finally cut his hair; it no longer curls out from under his baseball cap like squid tentacles. Now he calls me John Lennon since money is too tight for luxuries like haircuts. That’s OK. He’s still young yet; he hasn’t experienced this mythical time much of the populace terms “real life.” I am pleased that he is doing well in his undergraduate studies; I hope when he finishes his degree the job market is better.
On this muggy summer day, my thoughts have already turned to winter and this coming Christmas. I had an idea last year about a deck of playing cards for the card players of the family; our faces would be the faces of the court cards and Aces. I chose to bring up the conversation to enlist my brothers and cousin for help. All three of them liked the idea immediately and said they would help collect photographs of the family (since they see them far more often than I do). My task was to find a printing company to actually produce the deck once we had put it together.
Of course, the most interesting and fun part of this project is assigning family members to certain cards. Who was going to be the infamous “Bitch” card (Queen of Spades)? I knew my choice. The role-casting had been self-entry on her part, an image she gradually built over time: impervious with a pessimistic kind of wisdom, but still soft inside (you just can’t say that aloud in a room other than family). I had many of the cards already planned out in my head; however, these would all change with the input of my brothers and cousin. I wasn’t intending that we had to choose gender-specific cards, but it seemed that I was ruled out by the assumptions of the other three. (Not that they are sexist, but they still have unconscious gender roles assigned and less gender flexibility. We were all raised in a “traditional” family structure with “traditional” gender-roles… so I’m the black sheep in this respect.)
Actually, that last thing I said, it’s not 100% accurate. B was raised by our grandmother primarily. My aunt and uncle both worked regular 9-5 jobs. They had some vacation, but not more than the average I suppose. My aunt chose not to stay home when they were young. My grandmother only lived a few blocks away, and she was retired. If she wasn’t watching the kids, she’d be recording movies on TV to add to her collection of one-time watched movies or she’d be reading another murder mystery. She had enough time on her own, about seven years since my grandfather passed away. My grandmother was a woman of action; she could only sit for so long, even with the company of her murder mysteries and TV movies.
It shouldn’t have surprised me one bit when B said: “So Grandma would be on the Ace.”
“Which one?” I asked.
“All of them. Grandma’s all the Aces.”
Everyone has the same dream at some time (all the time?). Over and over again…
Before you mount arguments, I refer you to this anime: Paprika.
The art, the progression of the story and the presentation places you fluidly in the dream state. You are primed for reception of the messages and for the acceptance of the dreamscapes presented. Trust me, you will find reflections of your own dreams in one or many of the tunneling realities.
The movie explores many concepts: the nature of dreams, control of the psyche, alter egos/dopplegangers, memories, trauma, sanctuary, and the splitting and merging of realities. When does one world end and another begin? Will we (can we) secure our portals and gateways? At what point does the veil become so thin that we can no longer tell which reality we are navigating? And is that a real concern if we can navigate each one effectively?
We may assume that our dream life is our own private quarters, secure and wholly solitary in experience. However, as humans, we share many primal landscapes and common scenarios. What themes keep occurring in your psychic spaces? We have all fallen through frightening depths. We have seen heavens and wastelands, history and revolution, alien planets and faery realms. We have been the pursuer and the pursued. (Ever meet the entity on the other end?) We are the warden and the prisoner, the student and the master, the defendant and the judge, the slayer and the slain, the champion and the monster… the list goes on.
What do the overlapping collective subconscious dreamscapes imply? Does it imply that the deepest closets of our psyches can be hacked, manipulated and modified by either ourselves or others regardless of our conscious awareness of what is happening? Does it imply that our evolutionary memories are similar despite region and culture of origin; that there is something about being human that ties us together regardless of race, religion or any other association/affiliation? Or take it another step… that there is something about being an animal, being of the Earth that we will always carry with us?
And what of those who hold memories and lives of the non-human: of the Faery, of the Stars, of the Angels, of the Darkness, of the Hungry, of the Shifters, of the Robots, of the Alien? With what dreams do they impregnate us?