A Short Discourse on Dreaming and the Liminal Edge

I have signed up for a writing class at Clark College and was asked to bring something in to read to the group…


A step from one world into another…

As I get older, my dreams seem to get more vivid, as if I am embarking on a journey that starts here in the waking world, and ends, somewhere different.  I sleep less, but slip more easily from a static state into a series of moments, memories, and images of madness. It is as if I find myself living on a liminal edge, that place between what I am and what I might become, that shoreline between life and death, that moment between simple wakefulness and the storm of dreams.

Ever since I was a child I have wondered at that moment when the eyes close and the dreams begin. The moment of stepping across an unseen threshold… of sitting and reading a book and then suddenly standing on an illogical road with people I have never met as the book slips from my fingers like an escaping bird.

If I am tired and trying to stay awake, I can do this over and over again, like a slow erratic drip from a leaky faucet. I am here and focused on the printed page, struggling to follow one word after another and then there is that weightless moment and I am staring into the face of the Minotaur. It can be just an instant, like the flash of a camera illuminating some random penetrating image and then I am back! Staring at the letters on the page as if they had jumbled themselves up while I was gone, or perhaps as if I had come back blind, but had not realized it yet.

I remember the moment before sleep and I often remember the dream which can be a clear vivid splash of thought, pinned to a wall, or the journey of a year and a day in a province of twisting paths and bewildered skies. What I cannot remember is the liminal threshold, the world between the worlds. I know it’s there, because I forget it.  I know it’s there because no matter how hard I try, I feel something slip away, walking from one room to another, but never remembering the passage or the door… And I wonder sometimes, if that juncture might be the most important moment of all. The pause at the top of an incredible arc, the transition between learning and knowing, the threshold we step across between no and yes, and the moment the book begins to slip.

Strange people

2 Responses to “A Short Discourse on Dreaming and the Liminal Edge”
  1. Peter says:

    Do you dream in color all the time, or black and white? Vivid sites are always aloof…….

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