Lily Iona MacKenzie's Blog for Writers & Readers


Writing the Dream Onward

If you’ve followed my blog posts at all, you know that dreams have been a passion of mine for many years. Each morning, I gather them into my journal as I once gathered eggs on my stepfather’s farm. And for me, they function in a similar way that eggs do, cracking open and providing nourishment. But eggs also suggest something in embryo, something coming into being, as do dreams. They are so multi-layered and while some seem nothing more than flotsam and jetsam, remnants from the previous day’s activities, others illuminate something valuable for the dreamer.

In a recent night visit, a former husband told me in a dream something he’d noticed about me—I need lots of change. While on one level, I’m pretty conventional and constant in my relationships, I also hunger for new things, whether it be through reading or traveling or cultural stimulation. Having my ex tell me this in a dream focused something for me that I hadn’t thought about before.

writing-the-dream-onward-copyDreams also seem indispensable for writers. What a rich source of narratives they are, spinning out stories night after night that are populated by individual, known and unknown in our conscious lives. They also provide a treasure house of images that we can call on in our fictions or poetry, suggesting worlds that otherwise wouldn’t be available to us, and stimulate our imaginations.

I recall another dream where houses were being resurrected from the seashore. It was such a surreal moment to witness this transformation, but the images made me realize that words are houses. Each one contains many rooms/meanings that we assemble into complex units, constructing plays, novels, short stories, essays, poetry, and so much more.

When I enter my dream world each night, I’m reminded of how inventive our psyches are, spinning out millions of narratives over a lifetime. How can we not embrace these gifts from our depths and write the dream onward?




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