Monday, August 25, 2014

Cassandra's Dream

After having an anxiety attack at work today, which lasted for a few hours in a fortunately low-grade manner, I was exhausted.  I came home with the intention of resting (not sleeping.. Just resting), because I hadn't slept but six hours last night.  I'm a needs-nine-hours person who only seems to manage that on the weekends.

Well, I must have gotten too still and cold because I fell asleep.  It wasn't that difficult to do, having been dizzy for most of the day, despite my attempts to maintain normal breathing. Edgy and nervous all day -- not good.  But also not stoppable, because I don't have medication to stop it.  If it's not over-the-counter, I try to stay away from it.  (Okay, I stay away from under-the-table stuff too.)

"Hello darkness, my old friend
I've come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence"

In my dream, I was wandering around trying to find someone... Anyone I knew. I finally stumbled across my sister's house (the ruins of the King Mansion downtown, in this dream) and started looking for her and my nephews.  This house was slowly collapsing all around them while they lived in it, and they didn't seem to notice.  Maybe they couldn't see what I was seeing.  

"In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone
'Neath the halo of a street lamp
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence"

At some point I tried asking them where the bathroom was, and they didn't notice I was even there.  I wandered around looking for a bathroom, and every time I thought I had found one, something made it inoperable.  Either there was no water, or the toilet was broken into pieces.  Again, I wondered how they didn't notice such a human problem.  In my dream, I really needed to go to the bathroom. It just got worse and worse.

At some point I became upset and frustrated and decided to go outside.  There was a line of empty horse stalls against the street and a large, noisy crowd of people milling around in the street.  The entire neighborhood around the house was in ruins, as if it had been blown up a few years prior and nobody could rebuild it. 

"And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more
People talking without speaking
People hearing without listening
People writing songs that voices never share
And no one dared
Disturb the sound of silence"

Being a bit fearful of crowds, I decided to hide in a stall until they went away.  I wasn't sure if they were responsible for the destruction or if they were just unhappy at having to live among it.

I REALLY needed a bathroom by this point.  I peeked out and saw several filthy, ragged boys had brought out baby elephants to show the crowd, trying to entice people to follow them.  The whole show was a bit creepy, because I was wondering how they had gotten hold of such young elephants.  Were they being cruel to them? And why were three of those babies grey, while the other two had soft white fur with baby blue irregular spots?  

The freaky elephants scared me as much as their handlers did.  A very dirty and crazy talking woman came around the corner of the stall and told me I had to go with her to see the elephants. She didn't have many teeth, which showed every time she cackled about something.  She kept trying to tie my hands with a big rope tied to a stake that was covered in mud, straw, and guess what? Elephant manure.  (The air smelled like a petting zoo by then.) I told her to get away from me and she vanished.

By this time I could feel my heart racing and I went into one of the stalls and answered the screaming call of nature.  Dreaming about peeing... Isn't that the brain's desperate attempt to wake up an adult? It usually doesn't work on children, ending in wet sheets.  Lol

" "Fools", said I, "You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you"
But my words, like silent raindrops fell
And echoed
In the wells of silence

And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made
And the sign flashed out its warning
In the words that it was forming
And the sign said, "The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls"
And whispered in the sounds of silence"


("Sounds of Silence" by Simon & Garfunkel)

Weirdly enough, I started hearing a song playing, like the credits of a movie.  It was a song that I didn't know the words to, but I knew the tune. "The Sound of Silence". I guess the expression "peeing like a racehorse" is accurate, because I did just that in that... Horse stall.  

At this point my brain must have desperately been trying to shake me awake, because I woke up so groggy I couldn't open my eyes very well. I'd only been asleep for half an hour, curled into a ball under the comforter, very cold, in a 73° house. (Digital thermostat). And... I had to go to the bathroom, pretty badly.  Heh heh... My legs were partially numb, so my staggering was pretty bad but I made it.

I woke up, went outside, and mowed the yard, listening to the newly downloaded song on my phone, on repeat, still feeling sad and scared by my dream.  I shoveled some dirt clods into a hole I've been trying to fill for 13 years, and a snake slithered quickly by.  I don't care for snakes, but it was a garter snake and it managed not to even startle me.  Nature doing business as usual.  

The elements of reality: my sister's house does have a horse barn.  I've been really bothered by the riots in Missouri and the President's refusal to handle anything other than his damn golf clubs. I'm afraid of the reported increase in terrorist activity lately.  I'm having anxiety attacks again.  I can't sleep well and I'm worn out all the time.  I'm worried about my dad.  His health and mine.  *sigh* another round of depression inbound.

I can see why I had such a freaky dream, but why bizarre elephants?  Elephants often symbolize wealth, but bizarre ones like I saw might mean fear of wealth acquired through loss.  

Isn't it funny that in high school I couldn't figure out literary symbols for the life of me, but it dream freaky things and I know what it's about.  After listening to the song, it seemed creepy.  It sounds like it's a warning against closing your mind to follow neon (false) prophets.  

So why did I think of Cassandra?  Well, to sum up her story, she could see the future but was cursed to never be believed.  Everyone said she was a weirdo, a drama queen, an insane person.  And then things became so much worse for her.  http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassandra. Oddly enough, when I checked out the myth to make sure I remembered it correctly, I found a new detail.... about snakes. I didn't know that.  But when she died, she was sent to the Elysian Fields, so even though her life was a horror, it worked out in the end. 

*sigh*. I don't need the uneasiness of bad dreams right now.  


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