Monday, February 1, 2010

atmosphere of altered dream

                                                         "La Dormeuse"
                                                                  by Tamara de Lempicka

and this is how it always is

we have always met in the dark
we have always hidden in the shadows

you have always cried with open eyes
you have always pleaded for secrecy

i have always searched for the light
i have always danced to the sun

and this is how it always will be

one day twenty years from now
i will see you by chance
standing with another in front of
a certain shop window in a certain city

and i will stand behind you
and i will touch you
and you will turn around

and i will see recognition in your eyes
but you will pretend you do not recognize

and my heart will fold over itself
not because you did not recognize me
but because you denied me

and i once had this dream…

i saw you twenty years from now
standing with another in front of
a certain shop window in a certain city
and you did not know me
and this was real in the dream that i dreamed
you did not know me and it was a nightmare
with you its custodian
after what we had shared was it possible
you could one day see me and not know me
and in my dream i’d written
the preferred scenario
where things went like this…

i saw you twenty years from now
standing with another in front of
a certain shop window in a certain city
and i was standing behind you
and i touched you
and you turned around
is that really you you said
it’s so good to see you
and i said it’s good to see you too
and you said what have you been up to
all these twenty-some odd years
and i smiled and told you every detail

but in the dream i dreamed
the true scenario had imposed itself
and it went like this…

i saw you twenty years from now
standing with another in front of
a certain shop window in a certain city
and i was standing behind you
and i touched you
and you turned around
and yes? you said
and i said it really is you it’s been so long
and sorry you said but do i know you?
followed by a confused look on your face
and my heart folded over itself
even as i slept and dreamed
not because you did not recognize me
but because you denied me

and this is how it always is
and this is how it always will be
in dreams we touch with floating fingers
that linger and hover but never feel
in dreams our voices are muffled
like they're speaking inside our heads
in dreams we are light like we're
levitating in a challenge to gravity
in dreams we try to alter outcomes
in the ultimate test to reality
and this is how it always is
and this is how it always will be


  1. A wonderful analysis of the relationship between dream and reality - of multiple lines of possibility all co-existing at the same time. The rhythmic use of repeated phrases and circumatances really helps to bring this idea home. The line regarding "levitating in a challenge to gravity" certainly hit home with me, as you can imagine!

    Quite wonderful!

    Steph x

  2. While I've been reading your (monumental) writing and seeing the images you choose to go with them over the past several weeks, there's been something on the tip of my tongue, a thought, a reference I couldn't quite grasp, you've been reminding me of a feeling I had once before, and I realized today, it finally clicked... I'm not sure I can explain it clearly, but you've been reminding me of the feeling I had while reading Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged some years ago. A towering work. Hard hitting ideas and characters that one does not forget easily. Hard hitting lives, larger than life characters. Your writing embodies all of that for me. You lay it out, how it is, how it always is... and send us readers reeling each time, reeling in the clarity of your vision, the honesty of your emotions, the honesty of your pain... and may no one ever deny you thus...

  3. the relation dreams , possibilitys , reality , feelings ..... all so well structured by you now .
    this is like a game .
    i like to play this sometimes .

  4. My heart folded over itself.....powerful emotion so well written, causing us to not only feel yours, but explore our own....

  5. awwww....apparently, he doesn't even see her now, as the appreciation is not even there. i really like the repetition of the scenerio, beautifully done.

  6. You know what I liked the most? The multiple-scenario appproach. Loved it. And yes, it's one of those situations where life imitates art which imitates life, which imitates art... ad infinitum. I loved the changes to italic. You write from the heart and I, for one, have never seen arteries as efficient a scribler as yours.

    Greetings from London.

  7. My God! that was splendid. I wish ". . . and my heart will fold over itself
    not because you did not recognize me
    but because you denied me" never happens to anyone.

    When I read this I thought of the movie 'Run Lola Run' where different perspectives are shown.

    Nevine, you are one talented woman. I am so much in awe of you. Autograph please . . .

    Love and joy,

  8. I could easily cry while reading this.

  9. OMG Woman queen... how do you ... how can you be such a genius?... I've read so much about dreams and metadreams... but this is the best EVER!
    LOve it! And you!
    Sweet Hugs my dear queen!

  10. Steph – I’ve always believed there is a thin line between the dream world and reality, and that does allow for endless possibilities in real life, and also in dreams. Repetition is a favorite technique because it has that ability to lull us and make us surrender our minds. Thank you for the lovely comment, Steph. :-)

    Owen – You can’t even begin to imagine the joy your comment has brought to my heart. I’m feeling both proud and humbled at the same time. Your very nice, very sweet words inflate my ego, but they also demonstrate the depth of your perception and your understanding of where I am coming from. I remember reading “Atlas Shrugged” too, and having very intense reactions to some of what I read, and finally realizing that the intensity of the reactions was due to my deep appreciation of the developmental process Rand had used throughout. So I appreciate immensely that my writing should remind you of Rand. Thank you so much, Owen. You are a rare gem!

    Caio – Be careful… it’s a dangerous game. But it’s quite irresistible, still. It’s so tantalizing to experiment with the possibilities, especially… that’s my favorite part, always. ;-)

    Steven – That’s one of the things I try for… to allow my readers to examine their own emotions. We are all so similar in so many ways. It’s just that different mechanisms make us tick at different rhythms.

    Kay – No, he doesn’t see her. But he does remember and recognize her. And he’d rather not acknowledge that because it just makes things easier for him, or for her if the narrator is a man. It could always go the opposite way…

    Cuban – I know this sounds crazy, but I’m sure you do sometimes realize, inside your dreams, that you’re dreaming. When this happens with me, sometimes I try to manipulate the dream, and I often do this when I’m at a certain level of alertness. But then my mind gives way and goes back to sleep and falls at the mercy of my subconscious, over which I have no control. And I do like messing with the italics, especially when I’m writing about dreams. I feel like they give a voice to the dream that is not quite as cut and dry as the voice created by quotation marks. BTW, my arteries are curtsying before your comment… Thank you! :-)

    Susan – I wish it never happened to anyone, too. But it does happen, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, reality strikes! And Susan, you are one sweet lady, and I so much appreciate having you as a blogger friend! :-)

    Secretia – Please don’t cry. :-)

    Dulce – I am no genius, Sweetest. I just think I know a little something about how our minds operate, that’s all. Hugs back at you. :-)

  11. The tragedy of souls parting, the heartbreak and the longing. The tantalising torture that surrounds the prospect of union. You have painted this picture for us.

  12. perhaps not, in my dream i can will things to happen....

  13. Oh, Nevine, I loved the layers of this one, plunging us deep, yanking us back as the truth claws for attention. Can you really manipulate your dreams? Isn't that a part of lucid dreaming? Anyway, it doesn't surprise me.

    You, more than any writer I know, lift the veil between dreams and reality. If never enough for yourself, you do so completely for us. Which is how you're able to jumpstart so many of our sluggish hearts. Your poems move.

    Not to plug my own work, but I once wrote this line of poetry:

    I believe in winds and words
    and the wild contractions
    that come with confusing them

    I always think of it when I come here. I believe in you.

  14. dear nevine, how many times i have had this same dream sequence, but in my own awake mind - mentally dialoguing the "when i see you again" scene - and rehearsing the variable dialogues possible, wondering of the script that will be performed - and knowing how my heart will fold over itself no matter which is chosen - a beautifully moving set of circumstances you have gifted us all - again - thank you!

  15. I loved "my heart will fold over itself
    not because you did not recognize me
    but because you denied me." And of course it gets repeated in somewhat different form throughout the poem. Again, you have employed rhythm and imagery that are sensual and controlled at the same time. After reading your poems, I always feel as if I have been in an intense experience where I retained a feeling of floating though I might just have crash landed on stark reality. It's quite an accomplishment and a measure of your literary gift. And what a pleasure it is to read.

  16. This post, to me, has a fatalistic thread to it. There are so many possibilities in your piece. Hopes, dreams, fears and nightmares are all possibilities in the end. The reality stares in stark contrast, it is simply what will happen. I'm not a fatalist, but I liked thinking about it and enjoying your work.

  17. This was for me very good design. Enough repetition and variation to add intrigue that and there was enough of the human condition to make me pause and take note.
    Very well written.
    Warm regards,

  18. Nevine, I've said it a million times, but I'll say it again. your words take my breath away. I love the structure of this piece, and the ongoing stream of consciousness. Sadly, it brings back memories. Dreams speak the things we fear to speak, things we fear to live.

    This was superb.

  19. Nice Blog. I will be back for more!

  20. Those dreams are all the more potent when we're awake.

    But that's the not essence here, is it? (The dream, that is.) When someone is not affected as strongly as we are, it cuts all the way back to the moment it actually happened. And drains its kneeling beauty.

    (P.S. What is it with word verification on your blog?? It's hadme. You're programming this, aren't you? ;) )

    What's even worse in when we start worrying about a heart-folding future when we should be living the beauty now.

  21. Great, now my P.S. got stuck up in my comment. That was supposed to be at the end. Mornings....

  22. Another wonderful piece Nevine. So many dreams so many lives..

  23. Martin – Thank you for seeing all of the parts of this dream. I think it is always the torture that haunts most…

    LW – Oh, yes. I can, too. That’s the fun of it… trying to will things to happen and then falling into the deeper sleep and losing control of my own will. It’s always so disappointing. But if you can will things to happen and hold it, then my hat is off to you! ;-)

    Sarah – I can somewhat manipulate my dreams. I’m a bit of a lazy, though active dreamer, and I allow myself to succumb to the need for deep deep sleep even while I am in the midst of planning out my Director’s Cut. ;-) And you can plug your work over here any time you want, Sarah. Are you kidding? I believe in your exquisite line of poetry… entirely. :-)

    Jenean – Funny how our minds work. We rehearse dialogues and scenarios in our waking hours and in our sleep, and most of the time our rehearsals end up nowhere, and most of the time it ends up not really mattering, after all. At the end of the day, we usually think to ourselves it was a good thing such and such a thing never came to pass. Why are we so complicated? Your comment made me think, so thank you for that!

    Judith – You have pumped up the rest of my ego, and now I am ready to explode. But I will crash myself on stark reality… it is our inevitable fate. I do write from my heart, mind, and soul, and I try to be as honest with my feelings as I can. And then the writing just does itself. I am so humbled that you appreciate my writing… so very humbled, as you are such a talented writer yourself!

    Christopher – Yes, I suppose there is a splash of fatalism here and there. Though I feel hindered by that fact, and though I am a dreamer, I am also a true fatalist – I do believe that certain things in life are just inevitable. I wish I could break that inflexible aspect of myself, and I admire you for not being a fatalist, yourself. And I also thank you for opening up your mind to the fatalism and still enjoying it.

    Simone – Ah, design! I like that. You have an eye for design, too, so I will not even try to contest that. Thank you for the high praise, Simone! :-)

    Eva – Coming from you, that’s a crown on my head. I’m sorry it brought back sad memories, but like you said, our dreams do face us with realities we’re sometimes afraid to face.

    Realliveman – Welcome, and I look forward to your visits.

    Jason – You got it exactly. The dream is not necessarily the issue… it’s the event, and how it affected us, and how it affects us all the more when we realize that the other was/is oblivious, or at least pretends to be. It changes the memory for us. And I do love some of the word verifications I get on some blogs, too. Quick fun for all of us!

    Turquoise – Thank you. :-)

  24. the difference between wishes and reality. and how, no matter what is said, we know deep down, will not actualise...

  25. What an extraordinary piece. Writing such as this is rare. I am but newly come here - I follow Shadow, and your comment on her site, today, brought me here. I am glad to have found you - over the next day or so i plan to explore here, a bit.

  26. Nevine,
    I loved this poem.
    Loved the structure and the repetitive phrases,which made me "entering" into the atmosphere of the poem thoroughly.
    Dreams are reflecting our anxiety, and your poem did reflect it so perfectly.
    Betty xx

  27. dreams are so powerful...

    I have dreams all the time that come true, its kind of spooky....

  28. Nevine-I do this often when awake. I see scenarios and alter them but always doubt the good ones. Im always afraid to imagine the brass ring. You wove that perfectly. ~rick

  29. Simply beautiful words !! I loved reading this ! Great post.

  30. Shadow – I know… Isn’t it sad how we always know?

    LceeL – Welcome! And thank you for your kind comment. I’m a great admirer of Shadow’s writing, so her poetry always elicits interesting thoughts. I’m so happy you’ll be exploring, and I hope you will enjoy what you find. I look forward to your company here at “Dreams”!

    Betty – I’m so happy you like it, my sweet friend! :-)

    Sir Thomas – Isn’t it? I’ve experienced the same thing. And I’ve had a few very eerie experiences where I’ve received messages in my dreams and found out they were real… Don’t know if it’s coincidence, or what, but I don’t believe in coincidence… Period!

    Rick – Oh, why are you afraid to imagine the brass ring? There’s nothing wrong with imagining… except the if the follow-up means that what we imagined will never happen… then the feeling is hard to cope with. I know.

    Unseen Rajasthan – Thank you, and I’m happy you enjoyed it.

  31. This reminds me of meeting a very significant ex several times over the years and really not knowing what to say or to think about seeing him. It was always the wrong time and I never said anything remotely like I wanted to or needed to. I am invariably paralysed by politeness. This poem echoed the scenarios that I wanted, feared and avoided.

  32. Compelling, captivating work, Nevine! I loved every bit of it and then some...

  33. Nevine I loved your poem. It reflects so well the way you somentimes feeel when you wake up in the morning.
    And it made me remember one of my most vivid dreams!
    Once when I was a very young child (maybe 3 or 4) the first thing that I did when I woke up in the morning was to look for "my" tricycle. As I couldn't find it anywhere, I asked my parents about it and they told me that I didn't have any tricycle and that I must have dreamt. I still wonder if they were telling the truth or if they could have given it away. I was so sure that I had that tricycle!

    I sometimes think that we dream our life.
    As for different scenarios, yes, I'd like to have the possibility to go back sometimes and try differents ones! Wouldn't that be great?

    Have sweet dreams
    and may them come true*******

  34. What a beautiful, heartbreaking piece, Nevine... It confers perfectly the quality of dreams, the absurdity that rises from our most hidden fears... I've had such dreams, of which I woke up crying, without the consolation of a re-dream...

  35. Funny how we humans struggle to accept what is without judgement or interpretation. And then we actually try to alter reality in our mind. That settles it-- we are all insane.

  36. Nevine: You will be the future Eleonor Carrington!!!!, beauty,nice and talent !!!!!!
    A big Kiss!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  37. In dreams we can live an alternative scanario many times a bit different, but in true life no one has this capability. But in the other hand thats why dreams exist. Very beautiful. All the time we return to the same, but never is identical.

  38. Mme. DeFarge – The beauty of poetry is that it allows each one of us to come up with our own interpretation. I do have to admit, however, that I can entirely relate to your take on this piece. In fact, it was partly inspired by a similar thought process… if I was to meet an ex-boyfriend at some point, what would happen? Would he recognize me? Would he remember? What would I not want to happen? Does it matter? I would say that it always makes us feel more secure to know we are remembered, even if a relationship did end.

    Calli – I’m so happy you liked it. :-)

    Crémilde – Yes, I can see how you woke up as a child and asked for a toy that you thought you owned, only to discover that there was no such thing. Sometimes our dreams can be so vivid as to lead us to believe they are real. I can also feel your sense of dejection at being told you had no tricycle. Our dreams take us into such beautiful realms, don’t they? Sometimes it’s crushing to come back… Merci, comme toujours, pour les étoiles! :-)

    Vesper – The consolation of a re-dream is usually a controlled thing, and I have to say that, even then, we do eventually realize that neither dream nor re-dream was real. It is heartbreaking, yes, to say the least. Thank you for your sweet comment, Vesper.

    Aine – I think it’s one of those survival instincts we have that drives us to try and alter reality. It’s definitely a coping mechanism. When life becomes too much, what else do we have to turn to but our dreams, or our daydreams? I do say I agree that we’re all insane… at least a little bit. I see you have a new post out… I’ll be by to visit soon.

    Osk – He he he… Osk, you’re too kind! Thank you… and kisses back! Oh, and I’ll be by to visit you soon as well. It’s finally Friday! :-)

    Kostas – Welcome! And I agree entirely that, although we can recreate our dreams, we cannot recreate realities that have already existed in our lives. Our dreams do save us from our worst fears, I think. They give us something to hold out for. Thank you, Kostas, for joining my world of dreams. I hope you will enjoy the ride.

  39. This work is filled with clever words - it reads to me like a collection of 2 or 3 hard rock songs mixed into one. I think it is enjoyable reading and I almost find music playing in my head with the words as I read.

    Great work

    Tom Bailey

  40. whew. i need to read this again, and again...

    once is too many. a thousand times isn't enough.

  41. Tom - Glad you enjoyed!

    Kim - :-)

  42. Between my arm and the two day power outage, I have been amiss. I love the repeating nature of this poem. It's like the way thoughts repeat themselves while we are awake, and we try to alter things then, and we get all pissed off at the different outcomes we postulate, and we have all this mental drama in our heads going on and all of it isn't real at all. I felt like this was more awake dreaming than night dreaming, that's what it felt like to me. And since I do that way too much, I really know the angst and frustration and amazing amount of mental workup that goes hand in hand with that awake dreaming. Again magical writing...

  43. Cat – I hope you’re feeling better. When I overwork myself, it’s my neck that becomes stiff. And then I just become incapacitated. Yuck!

    But yes, when we daydream, we are more able to manipulate our thoughts. Sometimes I can manipulate my dreams when I’m sleeping, but the fact of the matter is that I slip into the deeper sleep and then the dream falls out of my control. And that’s what happens in this poem – the character is trying to manipulate the dream, but the dream as it wants to play itself out cuts in and forces itself upon the dreamer. And awake dreaming is quite painful, because there is always that realization that we’re not really experiencing any sort of reality. Funky stuff! ;-)

  44. wow - i agree with tom - it reads like a poem, and it rolls like lyrics. that is amazing.

    and i love the way this wrestles - the blurring of the subconscious and the conscious - the resolve and the helplessness - and how you carry the opening line to the end, with a twist.

    this will be soaking in for a week.

  45. my dear nevine - i come here sometimes, to your little corner, when it is quiet and dark, or light and not quiet, busily or leisurely, and read some of your things several times at a time - this is one of those - and each time i am here, it is as if these words somehow had slipped into my own shadows, capturing all there, including the tears -

  46. Joaquin - We so grapple with reality, sometimes... we tend to blur, like you said, the subconscious with the conscious... or we try to, anyhow... and many times to our own detriment. Reality always creeps in. So happy you enjoyed this, Joaquin!

    Jenean - I know we share so much, especially in spirit. I'm happy that you can find yourself in some of what I write... I often wonder if my writing is too disturbing... but it is who I am and I try to be true to myself... as I know you do with your writing. Your visits are a treasure, Jenean! :-)

  47. haunting lines and beautifully scripted1 Really a great experience being here...

  48. Smita, I thank you so very much for that sweet comment. Please don't be shy to come back for more visits. Thank you.


Your thoughts are deeply appreciated.