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The Dreaming Manifest.

An ongoing, participatory archive of the unconscious. [Alison Kotin, 2012.]

Last Night: “Last night I dreamed that I was walking along the top of a high dune by the beach with my mother, who was taking pictures for a photo essay on a strange fad of the moment: beachside homeowners deciding to replace the roofs of their houses with new, totally differently-shaped ones. They discarded their old roofs in the woods along the beach where they lay among the trees: peaked, mansard, gabled. "You won't see these much longer" she told me in a serious tone.” — Alison

Longing.

I dreamed that I was in some kind of ship that had the ability to fly so fast that time itself slowed down. It took me to a warehouse where all the colors of every sunset were stored on racks like bolts of fabric. Just one day's worth stretched for miles and miles of orange, rose, yellow, cyan... I couldn't stop crying the whole time I was there because I knew that if I was ever able to return, the day I was seeing would already be gone forever.

- Alison K.

Divorcee.

In the earliest dream I remember, I was visiting my grandmother's apartment, and for some reason tried to go inside through the back door she never used. I found a tiny room with beautiful red velvet drapery on the walls, and a delicate mahogany table with a box of chocolates on it. My aunt's ex-husband was sitting in an armchair in front of the fireplace.

- Alison K.

Intimacy.

A dream within a dream. From the 1369 Cafe in Inman Sq. I was posting on Facebook the following deep thought: "You're never REALLY friends with someone until you've seen them naked." Note: in waking life I do not subscribe to this philosophy.

- Alison K.

Growth.

In a nightmare, I had a hideous, translucent, hexagonal growth on one cheek.

- Alison K.

Squids.

Last night, I had a dream with a woman that just rejected me from a job as a guide. I was finding my path in life. Suddenly I was trying to scoop clams out of these little miniature habitats. Really beautiful with all sort of purple coral like stuff and lots of white, maroon, and tans. The clams wouldn't stay in my little ladle spoon which was deep enough to fit the clams. then I was in the water somehow in a pool sized habitat. And a squid the white and purple ones with the beaks had another clear squid and both of them were attacked to my arm. I spent the rest of the dream getting myself detached first from the beaked squid and then from the clear squid. In the dream I could actually feel pressure on my right arm. Where the squids were attached. I was able to remove them both from me. I don't remember getting out of the water or not. I think it is about my art career and the squids resemble the art world and my preconceptions about what I must do.

- Paige

Love.

I had a dream that I met Death. He was taking a day off, and for some reason found me and decided we should hang out. Nothing died all night as we strolled around a city I'd never seen. We met a man who saw his grim reaper costume and ran the other way, and I pulled him away from another woman we met (saying "stop it! stop it!"). I said he was dressed like the grim reaper, but under the hood he was just a young man with a pale face and paler blond hair. We held hands and his fingers were chilly. I found myself wishing that he didn't have to go, and woke up regretting the briefness of our encounter.

- Alison K.

Red Cats.

In a variation on another recurring dream, I dreamed that we had acquired two additional cats. They were both fire-engine red, and I thought "MAN, those cats are so cool!"

- Alison K.

Blood.

a dream inspired by kung-fu-movie choreography. I was (or I was watching?) a young man who was a master of fighting with two knives. I loved the feeling of their hilts in my hands. I was sure of my speed and accuracy. Another fighter (a woman) challenged me, but before she could move I vaulted over her head and pricked the palm of her right hand with one of my two blades. I woke with the image of blood spreading in her open palm like a flower blossoming.

- Alison K.

Tack.

In my sleep, I felt a sharp pain in my right forearm. I looked at my skin and was horrified to see a thumbtack buried in my skin.

- Alison

Pets.

The other night I dreamt that I was with my dog and another small dog in a house that had a front door and a back door. The dogs really wanted to go outside, but there was bear cub in the yard and I was concerned it was going to eat them. Unfortunately, neither of the doors would stay closed, and the dogs kept getting out. Every time I got one dog back inside and fixed that door, the other dog would get out the other door.

- Jen G.

rejection.

I had a dream that Richard Branson was giving me a ride to the airport and that airport was virgin galactic. I asked him what it felt like when he was first starting out and encountered his first rejection. He said "absolutly horrible, just horrible" He then told me a story about a radio program he wanted to do but the saudis or the Armenian goverment wouldn't let him run it and how disapointed he was. Just as he was about to twll me how he perservered I woke up

- anonymous contributor

Pregnant.

I dreamed that I agreed to get pregnant as a surrogate for an old elementary school friend. My mother wasn't pleased, but I told her "Hey, it's only practice!" I woke up feeling strangely disappointed.

- Alison K.

Guru.

Dreamed I was trying to solve a police procedural type mystery involving teenage girls and a stolen engagement ring. During my search I met an elderly Indian guru who promised me some advice if only I would photocopy a handful of train tickets for him. They came out shredded into ribbons, so I had to sort them out. As the guru performed complex yoga contortions I explained to him how my sorting paper scraps was like a form of data visualization. He didn't seem impressed, but I was working hard to please him.

- Alison K.

Gay.

I dreamed I was someone else, in love with a different person. I still had to come out to everyone I know.

- Alison K.

Laser tag.

I dreamed that I was a little kid playing some kind of laser tag - I had to hide in a cabinet under the kitchen sink to avoid being shot by a group of other kids. It started off fun, but became progressively more scary. The space under the sink was much too small for me.

- Alison K.

Evolution.

I dreamed that I was with Darwin during his first voyage to the Galapagos. Among the indigenous inhabitants we found there, it was customary for the women to speak from behind veils while wearing chandeliers on their heads.

- Alison K.

Weird.

Dreamed last night that I was in a gingerbread-y small town where everyone was out to watch the PARADE OF WORRIES. The first float was a marching band called "Missed Opportunities." Second float was three guys dressed as 50s era "nerds." Representing "Weird Sh*t."

- Alison K.

Mean girl.

Last night I dreamed that I returned to my elementary school for a reunion. My classmates were waiting for me in the parking lot, but when I approached they all ignored me, except for a few condescending smiles.

- Alison K.

Zeppelin.

In another recurring dream, I am crushed to the ground by the underbelly of a large flying machine: a zeppelin, hovercraft, or jet plane.

- Alison K.

Expanding.

In most of my dreams there is an expanding landscape woven together like pixels from all parts of my waking life, only this one is lush, sparse and always just past sunset. It's instantly recognizable as its own.

- Colin

Mitzvah.

I dreamed that my wife was performing my Bat Mitzvah. She conducted the incomprehensible ritual by reading instructions out of an illustrated guide like the one they give you on the plane about what do do in the event of cabin depressurization, or a crash.

- Alison K.

Observer.

Last night's dream was an out-of-body experience. I was narrating the script with my eyes closed. All I remember was saying aloud the phrase "her complicated body lay next to mine."

- Alison K.

Boy.

I dreamed I fell in love with a boy who I had never met before. For some reason we had to separate after knowing each other for only a few days. What I regretted most was that we would never have a chance to look at constellations together.

- anonymous contributor

Disaster.

I dreamed of a catastrophic car crash. I was trying to walk through the streets with a friend and there were bodies everywhere covered in plastic sheets. Sanitation workers were all over, hosing blood off the sidewalks. The dream began as a slapstick comedy about two Italian brothers who ran a pizza truck.

- Alison K.

Robots.

Back in December 2012 I had a dream about three Robots that looked like the Lost in Space one. They were taking a cigarette break from the Defense Industry Complex, when they adopted their Three Stooges personalities. They were waving their arms with the cigarettes saying Danger! Danger! Other employees were just rolling their eyes. Later, in the parking lot, it had snowed, all three Robots dove and latched onto a car's rear bumper which began to make doughnuts in the snow. They were having a blast.

- Larry Rippel

Reconnect.

This first part is not the dream; it's background information. A few months ago the father of my best friend in high school died. The man was 95 or so. He was a quiet man and fairly opaque when I knew him as a teen-ager. After his oldest son committed suicide at age 24 or so, we drifted apart, mostly because I could not stand to feel his pain as well as mine. Much later, we re-connected when he lived in Florida in retirement; we visited Florida to see my wife's mother and he lived nearby too. Knowing him as a 60 year old adult was very different than when I was young. And I felt no more pain; it was good to have a loving friendship. Last night I had a very vague dream that we met and walked and talked for a while. And I had the dream impression that he was giving me some kind of guidance or comfort, but I don't recall any of the content for that - just that the interaction was guidance or comfort. Anyway I felt better as the dream faded. I woke wondering if this was a spiritual visit, although I have NO believe that dead peoples' spirits can visit the living. It was strange but good.

- Kincade

Sororcide.

A nightmare. I dreamed that my brother was a dangerously crazy person. He chased me from place to place, grabbing my arm painfully and trying to bite me. I hid as best I could. Somehow I figured out that I would be safe in my grandmother's apartment. I crept in. The place was empty of furniture, but brilliantly lit. My grandmother met me in the kitchen, and I noticed that we were wearing the same outfit. That realization filled me with an inexplicable sadness.

- Alison K.

Found.

I dreamed I was riding in a car with an old friend. He turned to me from the driver's seat and asked: "What would you do if you lost me?" I answered "I wouldn't lose you. I'd just keep looking until you were found."

- Alison K.

Infants.

I dreamed I had twins. They were tiny - smaller than the size of a finger. I had to hold them close to my ears to hear their minute sounds. One of them complained of a broken heart.

- Alison K.

Humanity.

I dreamt I had been invited to a artist's home to contemplate the nature of humanity. We talked, while I was considering a comment my attention fell away and I was looking out of a picture window at a lovely rock wall garden. Friends and children from around the universe were staying there. Some were experiments in the essence of humanity having been created, in parts, by various machines in the artists house. Not a factory or assembly line but one offs. Chunks of body parts made one at a time. Soft marble colored flesh fell out waiting to be assembledSome of the children were malformed or curiously different. For example, a boy, whose language I didn't speak was trying to get me to gently scratch the palm of his hand. I finally got it just so. I tried it on his freckled friend who found it irritating. I could see the uncomfortable tickle on his face. I tried just a gentle stroke with my fingers from wrist to fingertips. More squirmy. Then I squished his fingers like I do to my children and his face lit up in pleasant surprise. To my surprise, his freckles altered in reaction and realigned on his face to make small graphic shapes.

- Carmen Uriarte

Boardgame.

The world had been tossed up, like pieces on a boardgame. We all knew that had moments before gravity was going to bring everything back down. A sense that we should be scrambling but nothing really that we could do. Then, the view from above 200 feet above as one by one, quicker than can be counted, pieces of the world dropped back down in the reverse order they'd been lifted up. Looking at the results, everything was jumbled but it was at least a small relief to find that things didn't stray from the areas they originally came from, and that in some cases things had stacked back up pretty reasonably.

- Natalie

Hallways.

I was running through the hallways of a haunted house with my wife. Every now and then we'd come to a window with a view of the sea, and I could tell that the house was in fact built on stilts over the water. It was beautiful. At the end of the last hallway was a door. My wife pushed it open to reveal a group of kids wearing grotesque masks, all yelling "Hi Jen! Hi Jen!" at the top of their voices.

- Alison K.

Late.

At my old high-school, in all it's late 20th century sterile, polyurethaned glory. Only there is a section that is the polar opposite of that: fancy, ornamental, hardwood, cathedral like, romanticism. I have a class there on a subject I knew in the dream but can't remember. Spend a lot of time trying to make it to class on time, hurrying through the labyrinthine halls and rooms of the old section of school. Sometimes events are going on or being set up in the various rooms, often what looks like fancy dinner parties, I am intrigued and want to stay to enjoy the food and ambiance, but I have a class to get to. I am always late. My teacher doesn't say anything when I arrive last and take my seat in the only partially filled lecture hall. The lecture hall is enormous and lined with dark wood, there is a balcony and box seats on the side like an old theater. I spend what seems like months at this school. Not sure if I live there, but I do dine in the ugly, industrial, buffet style dinning hall in the new section some times. Always running late and always alone. Some days I wonder outside in the neighborhood around the old section of school, it is on a small river with large colonial style brick houses, occasionally some houses with stone exterior, like a castle, but still in the colonial style. I think, "this looks a lot like Brookline, MA." Often these houses have candles centered in the windows, and although it is daytime there seems to be darkness to the sky, like daylight in the dead of winter, only more so. There is a sense of impending nightfall, which adds to the sense of urgency, of being late. I walk by the river, the current is mild and the air is pleasantly warm, but there is a sense of impending danger. I must not dawdle as I am already running late for class or dinner. On the last day of school we have to clean out our lockers. My locker is very full, too full and too large for it's size. The tasks feels daunting and for some reason I don't know, dangerous. Other people interact with me for the first time in the dream, no one from my waking life, but in the dream we seem to know each other well, maybe from class. They are young, high school or college age, so am I. They help me clean out my locker, removing books and loose paper, and lots of things that don't normally go into lockers including stuffed animals. Among the stuffed animals are three small bears, lined up now on the ground, which has become dirt and poorly maintained grass, outside. They look like the teddy bears I grew up with. Only one looks a little to real, although at the same time plasticky. There is a feeling of movement along it's surface, like a pulse or subtle shifting. I am repulsed but drawn to it. I lean in for a closer look. The bear talks and I understand what it says, but I can no longer remember even the gist of the words now. Realizing I am very late to the final class I rush off, completely shaken from the talking toy bear. I think, "If this is possible are there any rules? Anything I can believe in or count on?" I finally make it to class and sit down. This is where the dream ends.

- Jessica Littenberg

Pilots.

I dreamed about two gay, Russian (or Italian?) stunt pilots. They did acrobatic tricks in tiny biplanes and cursed loudly in a made-up language when either one made a mistake. They were deeply in love.

- Alison K.

Skating.

I dreamed I was at the skating rink where my family used to go when I was a kid. I had my hockey skates on and was swooping back and forth across the ice with effortless footwork. The whole time I was thinking; "I love this so much - I have to go as fast as I possibly can so I don't waste a second!"

- Alison K.

Sacred.

I was outside, somewhere bucolic and unfamiliar. My mother was there with me. There was a woman a little ways off, down hill on a dirt road heading toward a stream, wearing a long white dress, throwing a white powdery substance up in the air that glistened magically all around her. My mother said admiringly that this strange, glowing, fairy-like woman bought Keen shoes for only $3 on sacred.com. "But she earned that price, of course," my mother told me knowingly. I wasn't sure what that meant, but supposed that one obtained discounts from this on-line shoe store with every purchase, so this woman must have had to buy A LOT of shoes to get a pair for only $3. My mother added that "sacred.com" is short for "sacred earth.com" and that the white stuff the woman was throwing up in the air was sea salt. With every sacred earth.com purchase, the company sends you sea salt that you are supposed to toss in the air, as this woman was doing, in order to help replenish the earth's supply of salt. "Isn't that a wonderful thing for a company to do!" my mother exclaimed.

- Alex

Teeming.

In a strange dream, the neighborhood where I grew up was blanketed by swarms of silvery-blue gnats. Billions of them organized into aerial twists and helixes like the branches of willow trees. Disgusting but fascinating.

- Alison K.

Pooped.

Dreamed I was researching (for work) an historic British sex workers' strike for better pay and working conditions. A protest that later became known as "Pooped in London."

- Alison K.

Ice.

I was in the hallway of an unfathomably huge house with endless rooms and apparently no way out, and I was looking for a door to lead outside. When I finally found one, it led not outside the building but into a courtyard. The courtyard was full of snow and there was a huge block of ice in the middle with a woman dressed in black frozen in the middle. I tried to go look closer, but I was stopped by three women in old dresses that were once beautiful, all with blindfolds over their eyes and amputated hands. The Handless Handmaidens told me not to enter the courtyard because it was the Court of the Frozen Queen.

- R.C.M.

Squidess.

I dreamed I was some kind of under-sea creature. My fellow amphibians and I banded together to avoid socializing with the giant squid. She had a lonely existence.

- Alison K.

Dinos.

I dreamed last night that Jen and I were visiting the grounds of a fancy estate. We walked out across a lawn that ended in cliffs overlooking the sea. In the distance I thought I saw huge seals frolicking among whitecaps, but I soon realized they were actually the heads of animatronic, stone dinosaurs.

- Alison K.

square.la.

I went wandering through a museum of science. it was a good museum with lots of displays and well stocked areas for groups of children to do projects or have classes. in one section there were spidery folded chairs in piles I had to jump over. I wandered aimlessly. I think I must have been going through this museum because I was bored so I didn't have a destination, I was just wandering. the museum was very large and there was a very large area that seemed to be a summer camp. they had hills and stones and trees. I found a large swimming pool set up to resemble a lake. one side was flat and low but the other side had a hill that reached to the top of the structure. the lake was indeed square and I noticed it had a wide planked, deep brown, hardwood floor under the water. the lake itself was square. I followed a rough trail up a hill strewn with boulders on the right side of the lake. I had no destination in mind except to see where that trail led. at the end of the trail there was a turn to the back side of the lake, up a steep rocky cliff. I went up easily. here the trail ended. I was high above the water, far away from the activity of the world, and facing a sheer face down into the water. when I turned to go back down, the trail had vanished. I was stuck up there, almost in the rafters of the building. I held onto a large tree to keep from sliding down off of the edge of the cliff. I was there for a long time and almost in despair of ever getting down. seemingly out of nowhere, some boys came sliding in on a zip line. there were 3 or 4 of them, playing around and hanging in various directions off of the line. I pleaded with them to help me or go back and get someone to bring me down. they were very cheerful but they refused to quit their play to go for help. my plight was as nothing to them. these boys were daredevils defying fear and sense to play here at the top of the museum. they tossed one of their group off the line and he dived down, down, down to splash in the pool. I considered my options and decided that if I had to I could dive myself, but I didn't want to. after more time, a handsome ranger came along, crawled up the cliff to my place. he was friendly. he didn't really help me get down, but his presence gave me confidence to brave the cliff without giving any directions on how to do it. the height terrified me but I went anyway. even the wide path I followed to get up the side of the square lake seemed more narrow and treacherous than when I came up and the view down made me dizzy. making the attempt was all I needed, though. once I passed the top portion, the rest disappeared in my memory.

- EF

Thunder.

I dreamed I was woken by a thunderstorm. I was sleeping in my childhood bunk bed, although I was an adult. I knew my parents weren't in the house, but I picked up my security blanket and went upstairs to sleep in their bed anyway. Their bedroom door was nearly blocked by a pile of laundry which I could barely see in the dark. My present-day cats came with me.

- Alison K.

Brigadoon.

I dreamed I was standing on the second-floor balcony of a large, victorian house, looking out across a misty, wooded distance. As I watched, a ship under full sail glided through the house, below my feet, and away through the trees.

- Alison K.

Professor.

I dreamed that I ran into literary theorist Terry Eagleton on the long escalator in the Porter Square subway station. We spoke briefly. He was wearing a professorial dark green turtleneck and brown corduroys.

- Alison K.

Creepy.

My mother in law found a giant, pale green Tomato Horn Worm caterpillar, and brought it into the house in a Tupperware container. I woke with an all-over, creepy-crawly feeling. This has also happened in real life, actually.

- anonymous contributor

Craving.

I was writing with an old fashioned ink pen in a journal the words: "how can I escape, and slake my craving for the forest?"

- Alison k.

Dumpster.

I was waiting in the rain by a chain link fence for a lady from Trinidad who said she was going to bring me some mangoes. I was at a farmer's market of some sort, but the food there was all very strange. I remember a cake that was made entirely of fig newtons. I soon figured the lady had forgotten about me, so I started practicing dumpster gymnastics, and was surprised at how gracefully I could flip and dive into the dumpsters.

- M. Trias

Classify.

I dreamed I had to list all kinds of animals in order of how many feet they have. The list went like this: "Pseudopod, monopod, biped, tricycle, quadruped, cephalopod, octopus."

- Alison K.

Witch.

This is a recurring childhood dream in which I am being chased by a witch with a very long, green neck. In this iteration, she chases me through a delapidated house in what now seems like the garden district of New Orleans on a rainy summer night. She wants my neck and she will not stop until she gets it. To escape, I flush myself down a toilet and awaken.

- Shannon

Close one.

I dreamed I visited Thailand, where I was met at the airport by a guide who spoke no English. He brought me to a hot-air balloon made from moss and flowerpots. As he settled into the basket beside me, I suddenly realized to my relief that we were going to be the best of friends.

- Alison K.

PetWhale.

in market place. 8 floating animals the size of staplers are for sale. i like the holographic whale/bird one. it swims in the air, so elegantly.

- rd

Buboes.

In last night's dream, Jen and I were reading one of those cheesy "it's fun to learn history!" comic books. There was a section on the Black Plague. That chapter was titled "Got Buboes?"

- Alison K.

roofs.

Last night I dreamed that I was walking along the top of a high dune by the beach with my mother, who was taking pictures for a photo essay on a strange fad of the moment: beachside homeowners deciding to replace the roofs of their houses with new, totally differently-shaped ones. They discarded their old roofs in the woods along the beach where they lay among the trees: peaked, mansard, gabled. "You won't see these much longer" she told me in a serious tone.

- Alison

Bomb.

I dreamed that I threw my father down a flight of stairs to escape from a suicide bomb blast.

- Alison

Locks.

I am awake at 345am because I was having a dream where I was part of a dance ensemble where my legs hung dow n from the ceiling and I seemed to kick balloons and balls accidently and there was some guy in the audience I had held hands with in the green rooom. This dream abruptly ended and I was wisked to a vivid or lucid dream where I got up to check if my door was locked. Which in the dream it wasn't. In the dream I then checked to make sure no one was in the house. What was awesome was I could see into corners of my kichen from my front door that in reality I would have had to move closer to see.which I enjoyed in the dream. I then in reality woke up cause a police helicopter flying super low flashed it's light in my eyes and the noise as super loud. I got up to check my locks and look outside...

- Paige

Gameshow.

I dreamed that our answering machine had become a comedy quiz show. You'd pick up the phone, dial the code, and hear your messages with a laugh track, canned applause, and a Vegas-style announcer yelling "Can you believe that, folks?" and "Oh no she didn't!"

- Alison K.

Sandwich.

In my dream, in some way I can't explain, a grilled chicken sandwich is the key to reversing a space-time anomaly that separated two lovers for years in non-congruent timelines.

- Alison K.

Blond.

I once had a dream that I fell in love with a blond-haired girl who slept at night on the bed of an old-fashioned photo enlarger.

- Alison K.

Ball.

I was playing volleyball with my brother, using a big yellow balloon as the ball. There was a translucent sheet between us. All I could see was a yellow shadow moving back and forth, and a voice in the distance.

- Alison K.

falling.

I had a dream once, many year ago, and it was a recurring thing. I dreamt I was falling, maybe from a tree or a higher place, down on the ground below. I googled it and saw that I am not the only one, its an evolutionary thing, many men around the world dream the same thing. Its interesting how many evolutionary id//ego issues regarding memory and emotional processing can be resolved if seen from the perspective of evolutionary biology. Never had that particular dream again after I found out that I was not the only one that had a dream of falling.

- Q. F. Azeem

Growwwing.

Many years ago, about age 14 or so, I had the most frightening dream of my life. I was in a room with a bunch of furniture - probably a classroom with those old kid desks with the liftable tops. In the dream, all the objects kept growing and getting bigger and bigger and coming at me! They grew in a smooth but steady rate, about the way a balloon grows as you blow it up. The furniture kept growing and getting so big it went past me, but more kept coming, That's when I would wake up in terror. Several years later I was telling a friend about this and wondering why dreams never repeated (at least for me). And then that night I had the same dream! Be careful what you ask for, eh?

- Kincade

Dressy.

I dreamed I was planning to attend a gala celebration of some kind at a local museum. When I got there, the place was brilliantly lit and full of elegantly dressed people who wandered slowly around the space, sipping champagne. I went though a sort of turnstile (like you find on public transportation) to the reception desk to pick up my ticket. A woman behind the desk asked me kindly, "Are you here for a class, dear?" I suddenly noticed that among the jewelled and tuxedoed guests, I alone was wearing enormously baggy, ripped jeans covered with paint splatters, and an ancient plaid button-down. I woke up with the words "under-dressed" on the tip of my tongue.

- Alison K.

Epiphany.

I also once dreamed I met God. For some reason I was visiting heaven, which looked like a train station full of happy naked people floating up by the high glass ceiling. Someone there explained that it looks like that to everyone at first, but gradually it will change to look the way you expect heaven to appear, whatever that is. When I met God he was the same way - first he looked like a wooden Jesus on a cross, then gradually he changed into something more amorphous, like a real person but also not. We walked through a yellow-leaved birch forest and quoted The Simpsons to each other and laughed. I asked him if he was so good at remembering Simpsons quotes because he watched the show, of because he was God. "Because I'm God," he said with a grin.

- Alison K.

shirt.

I was camping with a coworker. We were in a little cabin (I think) in the forest (I think?). He gave me a sweet smile and I unbuttoned his short slowly.

- anonymous contributor

Moon.

In the most frightening dream I ever had, I looked up at the sky on a quiet, clear night and saw that the moon was covered with giant mushroom clouds.

- Alison K.

Bread.

Dreamed that my mother had another child. My infant sister was a blocky, rectangular slab of a baby, and as I held her she was sometimes a loaf of whole-wheat bread, and sometimes not.

- Alison K.

Violent.

I dreamed my classmates convinced me to try playing Grand Theft Auto. To my horror, in the game I murdered someone by bludgeoning them with a shovel. I escaped the crime scene when I was mistaken for Thom Yorke by a group of socialites.

- Alison K.

Ganesha.

I was hired to video a British Diving Team who wore old British Red Military Uniforms complete with Pith Helmets. They demoed their routine, diving into multi-layered pools all shaped like Ganesha, the Indian Elephant God. The pools of water flowed into each other, the trunks of the elephants providing the water flow. After watching the demo, I thought, damn, I'm going to need a LOT of cameras to catch all of the action plus many of the cameras will need to be waterproofed.

- Larry Rippel

Acrobat.

In my dream, I am amazed by my brother's acrobatic tricks on figure skates as I clomp around the outside of the rink with one skate untied.

- Alison K.

Coughing.

I woke up coughing last night. I was dreaming I was an engineer back in the 1800s and we were trying to figure out how to build a bridge over a river in the Western States for the railroad. I was checking the depth of the river by wading through it and I was trying to light my pipe, which started the coughing fit.

- Larry Rippel

Grammar.

I dreamed I was a contestant on America's Next Top Model. Before the photo shoot all the girls had to compete in a challenge. The challenge was to edit an essay for style and grammar. I thought, "No matter what my pictures look like, I'm going to ACE this!" Then I thought, "Wait - be careful - the girls who are too cocky always get eliminated."

- Alison K.

running.

I was running fast and easily down a grassy hill. At the bottom was the woods. It was fall and the trees' leaves were brilliant orange and yellow.

- Bet

Hair.

Although for my entire life my hair has never been longer than chin-length, I often dream that it has grown dramatically past my shoulders.

- Alison K.

Wedge.

I was at a dinner party where all the guests were asked to take on pre-determined personas ("the comedian," etc.). One guy was "The Wedge." He seemed to be wearing football pads under his sweater, making his shoulders unusually bulky. All night The Wedge interrupted conversations, demanding that different people move to sit next to him. He crammed food into his mouth with his hands, and stared around the table belligerently.

- Alison K.

Boxes.

I dreamed I was an angry man on a roadtrip to meet various ex-girlfriends in diners, where they wanted to return boxes of my belongings. I shouted and threatened them, knocking the boxes out of their arms and swinging my fists. Even I was uncomfortable with this behavior, but I couldn't stop.

- Alison

Piglet.

When I was 5 I dreamed that I had killed Piglet (of Winnie the Poo) and he was lying on the side of the street, looking very wrong, and dead. He had turned a bright shade of orange. For years later, I was afraid of the color orange.

- M Trias

Kings!.

I attended an important State function -- an evening of many speeches on topics of crucial world interest, delivered at length by international leaders. These speeches were followed by an elegant soir饠attended by heads of state and their diplomatic entourages. Everyone was very formally dressed, with many dignitaries wearing the ceremonial garb of their nation -- robes, headwear, jewels and weaponry, so that the affair was extremely colorful and lively. I wore long white gloves, which did go rather well with my bright yellow gown. Alas, my look attracted the unpleasant advances of the Saudi King Faisal, who annoyingly insisted that I accompany him there and then to his hotel room. I refused, yet he strong-armed me out of the hall. This was both frightening and irritating, and I was hugely relieved to see my sister, whose wit I knew would surely divert the King from his nasty purpose! I introduced her to the him, and yes! his attention immediately shifted to her. Aha! As I knew would be the case, she was far too clever for him! She quickly affixed a large carrot to the end of her nose, like a snowman's! This was enough to put the King off the two of us, and he hurried away.

- K. Glover

fingertip.

A grisly nightmare where I was (for some reason) using a sharp knife to slice the nails off my own fingers. With each finger I felt more discomfort with the process, until I could wrap BandAids around all of them to get the cuts out of sight.

- Alison

Photos.

For most of my childhood, my grandmother lived on the 16th floor of an apartment building across the street from the house where I grew up. Last night I dreamed I was lying on the rug next to the big floor-to-ceiling windows in her dining room, looking down at my former home. Instead of the house I saw my mother standing below me taking a photograph of me at age 2 or 3 playing on the beach with my grandfather (her father, who died when I was about that age). In the dream, I knew I was looking into the past, and could even visualize the photo she was taking, years later, framed on the wall. She looked up at the apartment building and I scrambled back form the window, terrified that she would see me watching.

- Alison K.

Dunes.

In my favorite recurring dream, I am near the sea, hiking towards the water. I know that just ahead is a spot on the beach I have seen before, a place to which I have always wanted to return. I know it will be around the next bend, at the base of a cliff or over the dunes, but I never make it there before I wake up. I have always wondered whether I never find the place because it is in fact somewhere beyond death and my ability to imagine, like Valhalla or Elysium. I wake from this dream consumed by longing to return and with a sense of deja vu, of returning back to a place I visited before.

- Alison K.

puppy.

An apricot-colored puppy an a little bear cub were playing and tussling together. By mistake the cub scratched the puppy, who cried. My sister and I gave the puppy some love and checked the scratch, and then let the playing continue.

- Bet

Dog.

Another nightmare. On the corner of a busy street, I noticed that a large dog (a German Shepherd) had been cruelly stuffed into a metal trash can. The trash can was just outside an animal clinic - I called for a vet but by the time she came outside, the dog somehow struggled out of the trash can and was crouched in a nearby alley. I could hear it panting painfully as the vet and I searched in the dark. Suddenly as the vet's back was turned, the dog caught sight of me and lunged forward clamping its jaws into my right hand. I woke up screaming and screaming.

- anonymous contributor

Posture.

I dreamed I visited a new doctor for a checkup. He examined my spine and told me "You know, if you adjust your posture you could be 6 or 7 inches taller!" I felt pretty conflicted about this.

- Alison

Time.

I dreamed I was delivering a lecture on the nature of time and timekeeping to a room full of art students. The stage was actually a small forest of birch trees, and everyone in the audience was wearing the same striped shirt in a variety of colors.

- Alison K.

Rooms.

I have often had different variations of a dream in which I discover that a formerly familiar house has a secret closet or trap door that leads to another, entirely different, set of rooms. Usually they are dusty from disuse, and richly furnished. The rooms seem to go on forever.

- Alison K.

Shrimp.

I dreamed I was standing next to a weedy pond with Jen. She scooped up a cupful of pond water and held it out to me to drink. It was full of scum and brine shrimp. She said: "Look! it's TEEMING with life!"

- Alison K.

Winter.

It is winter. In the back yard, ice has frozen into fantastic spikes and spirals that glow red- and white-hot like molten glass as they melt.

- Alison K.

Grotesque.

A horrible nightmare. I was at a dinner party with a group of adult siblings. One brother stood next to a fish tank that rested on a piano, alternately drinking water from the tank and plucking fish out with his hands and snipping their faces off with scissors. Two sisters began arguing, then one pushed her hand down the other's throat, all the way to the elbow. Her fingers were bloodied, but no one said anything about it.

- Alison K.

bookcover.

Detail from a larger adventure dream: I meet my contact who is working as a maglev train operator. It looks futuristic, but as in many 1970's sci-fi films, the controls seem remarkably straightforwardly physical and tangible. It seems risky but possible that my contact has been able to just step in and take over driving the train. A hardcover book is exchanged. The book has something to do with an autistic, number-loving person. The secret information we are trading has been encoded in the seemingly-random numbers on the background of the bookcover art, hidden in plain sight.

- Natalie

Collapse.

A nightmarish image as part of a larger dream: last night I watched a large, ~6 level, city-block sized brick apartment building slide down a hillside. I was amazed how much it held together and moved elastically as it generally slide down a three-to-five hundred foot steep hillside on its giant concrete foundation pad. The movement was improbable and unsettling but completely real-- like the old video of the first Tacoma Narrows bridge oscillation. When it finally touched down, residual momentum caused the surviving structure to ripple and hit itself, like slow motion jello. I was so surprised that the bricks held together and could see the brick texture rippling. It was very sad to think that some people might have survived all the way down the slide but would have met their end with the self-rippling destruction.

- Natalie

hill.offi.

one big chaotic dream. I was working in a large studio with Paul Kahn. it was an earthy place, both in decor and there was actually some places where the floor was gone and the ground could be seen. one place had hills. the studio had an "L" shape, a long hallway that bent to the left at the back. my job seemed important to me but I didn't really have much to do. Paul seemed deeply occupied by photographing little, handmade things that constantly showed up in the studio. I took them to be a type of art/craft. they were quite interesting, though small. many of them were cute things that looked like animals. as time went on there were more and more of those objects in the studio, until they started to overwhelm the space. along with the accumulation of objects, student interns began to arrive as well. first there were 2 who I gave some direction to. they seemed both naive as well as wise at the same time. then more and more came. they were a rowdy bunch, making noise and bouncing around, in and out of my office. my office was one of the places where there were hills instead of floor. I had a very small, wooden desk with a computer on it. the desk was as wide as it was deep, made of dark wood, old but well made and solid. it was pushed into a corner. the space was large but the small hills covered with grass made it less functional. the interns would come into my office and do distracting things. once they were swatting each other with rolls of wrapping paper that make loud cracks. I yelled at them that they were ruining the paper for use and they needed to get out. they left and I started closing the door. oddly, the walls of my office had only 2x4 struts but no actual wall covering but closing the door still effectively kept them out. the latest interns to come in were quite rowdy. they spoke in a slang that I could not understand at all. they didn't seem to have any work to do, just hang around in large groups and goof off. by this point, I had little to do. I went into my office and Paul had taken my tiny desk for his photo setup. I went to complain about that. he said I would not get it back any time soon. I went back to my office feeling pointless but determined to make some kind of headway. there was a second desk in the office with the same type of construction but larger. I decided to repurpose that desk for my computer. maybe there was a large printer on that desk but I felt it could go somewhere else. so I set up my new desk but wondered what I would do since I didn't have any work. as I was doing my setup, some of the interns came boisterously into my office. I chased them out to the hall where there were more interns. these new interns, possibly 15 or 20 people, were dancing and chanting in their odd slang. I made a fuss over their unprofessional and distracting behavior but Paul didn't seem to care what they did.

- ef

Ants.

Last night I had a nightmare about text whose letters turned into carpenter ants and swirled around on a page. Ants do make me uncomfortable, but there was something terrifying about this dream that went beyond by usual dislike of Formicidae.

- Alison K.

Cape.

My dream was vague and confusing, involving a giant grey wool cape and my friend Andrew. I'm not sure why, but re-reading a journal entry from college about breaking into someone's yard at night brought it to mind.

- Alison K.

Moths.

I had a dream last night that I was building an Arduino-powered miniature piano that had moths as keys!

- Alison

Rictus.

I dreamed I went to a Halloween party dressed as a skeleton. When I arrived at the house where the party was, a guy I didn't know opened the front door, looked at my skull mask, and said "Hey - nice rictus!"

- Alison K.

Poke.

I was in Afghanistan with a group like Doctors Without Borders. The village kids were laughing and having a great time playing with one of the (non-Afghan)doctors until he playfully poked one of the small boys in the tummy. Everything went completely still -- this was considered to be a grave offense. Our translator said that the only remedy was to buy the family any two items they desired in the bazaar. They chose two gold chains. We were all aghast that each chain was valued at $1800! Thus ended my hope of getting a small chain for myself.

- MAG

Taxiing.

A long-time reoccurring theme of mine from some of my favorite dreams: I'm in a jet airplane. The plane taxis out the airport and onto surface roads. There's a feeling of wondering if this is the right thing to happen, as well as excitement, as well as a feeling that this is strangely normal. It will turn out that the entire journey will be on regular roads at taxi speed. It's not frustrating. It's usually at night with wonderful airport lights and some flashing ones as well.

- Natalie

Corpse.

I had died. After some blank period doctors resuscitated me, and I returned to a sunny world. It seemed to me that my time could run out any minute. So I sat outdoors obsessively checking my arms and face for signs of necrotizing flesh.

- Alison K.

Vectors.

I dreamed the world was a blank white page. On this page was only a black vector outline of an incompete circle. My job was to close the circle by completing the vector. I spent all night fighting busier curves an loose anchor points but could not succeed in closing the circle. I awoke screaming "the circle won't close!.

- Martha

CO to DF.

Dream fragment: on an airplane from Colorado to Mexico City with Alison K. I turn to her and say, well, I guess it's a pretty straight shot-- because the starting and landing cities are both such high elevation. When I think of this dream fragment now, I immediately see something like a "southwest red", a warm hot dry color that would be used for Mexico on a US-centric map.

- Natalie

Balloon.

As part of a larger dream, I was trying to plan a model rocket launch to the edge of space by first floating it up on a balloon. I kept getting caught up trying to deal with how to get the simple rocket to go straight up without hitting the balloon, and thinking about timing issues so that it could drop down and let the balloon hopefully get out of the way.

- Natalie

Atlantis.

I'm me, a girl. In the dream, this night I made out with a girl. But I don't experience that in the dream. The story picks up as I've just found out that she's trans also. I've known her for years. In the dream she is now someone from college-- maybe even L__ L___ (but not really her). Now in the dream it's the first night of college. I'm telling her that I am just so surprised; I'm trying to explain that while I don't want to encourage a cultural hierarchy of judgement which promotes "passing", I'm so amazed by her voice and how her body is so feminine. She's become standoffish and uncomfortable and gets up to leave. Now, it turns out that I've also made out with a guy earlier that night-- our family friend, psychiatrist Steve _. I'm in the entranceway to the house-turned-apartment that I'll be living in at the university. I share it with others, including Steve, who is now out in the parking lot out front of the house/apartment talking to some guy, maybe romantically. I ask how we lock the door, or if we do-- my room opens right off of it. He's annoyed and sarcastically says, 'no, we just leave it open'-- but I can't really tell if that's actual info or not. Now, I'm in the entranceway with a bunch of people, including these two. We're watching a holographic scene of a spacecraft docking with a space station. No one is surprised that we're able to float up near the projection. Someone asks, insinuating, what we've been up to (me and the girl) and I try to laugh it off, though someone makes a naughty comment about the spaceships docking. NOW the dream shifts and two things are happening: I'm showing my friends an amazing anime about space, and I'm actually in the space adventure story as well. I'm trying to engage the group of people, telling them, if they're not appreciating it, c'mon, this was pretty amazing for 1986! (when the anime was created.) Like the 2002 'Solaris' remake, all of the spacecraft either look like spaceshuttles, or have that distinctive cockpit window look. I'm thousands of feet above a space airfield, looking down at all sorts of variations of crafts. There's some sort of excitement-- as soon as it's landed, I'm trying to get the shuttle Atlantis to take off again. Evidently in this world, it's technically possible, and in the dream I wonder if it's a new ship with the same name, or if it's been modified over time. A very real feeling dream.

- Natalie

School..

When I was in grade school, I used to have a recurring dream at the start of the school year. I'd be walking down the familiar hallway of Gayhead Elementary, looking for my classroom on the first day of school. I don't remember ever finding the classroom in my dream, just walking down that hall...

- Kent Millard

Hoarding.

Insomnia lat night, broken by a dream in which we had first one, then two, then dozens of extra cats in the house. This multiple-extra-cats scenario is becoming a recurring theme...

- Alison K.

Psychic.

I dreamed that I briefly gained the ability to hear other people's thoughts, but when I tuned in all I could hear was crowd-goes-wild cheering.

- Alison K.

Sirens.

Jen and I were standing in the rain in a nice neighborhood, outside a block of brick townhouses. We noticed a skinny plume of black smoke pouring out of a crack in the door of the house opposite. Jen tried to call 911, but had to leave a voicemail. We waited impatiently for fire trucks to arrive, straining our ears for the sound of sirens.

- Alison K.

Greyscale.

As part of a larger dream, I remember a scene where I was walking with a group of people. I was a guy in an all-white outfit: pants, jacket, probably t-shirt. My brother was in a similar all-black outfit. I looked down and noticed that I was carrying an electric guitar case, also all white. In answer to some question, I said, tounge in cheek, "Oh yeah, we're doing the good brother / bad brother thing." (That day I'd been home under the weather, watching Torchwood all day, so maybe Cap. Jack's outfit was influencing me?)

- Natalie

Demon.

Nightmare last night in which a childhood friend was possessed by a demon. A night of horror-film chich麠unfamiliar faces in mirrors, skittering shadows, disembodied voices.

- Alison K.

Sniffles.

I became congested in my sleep, and dreamed that my sinuses were stuffed with blocky capital letters.

- Alison K.

Chemical.

I dreamed that a chemical spill had resulted in a new race of dodos.

- Alison K.