Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Living Dreams


Last night (or, rather, this morning) I had the greatest dream I've had in a while. Well, I stayed up writing until way past 6:00 a.m. and I only went to bed because it was already very late, but I could have stayed writing. My mind was still buzzing with ideas, and I didn't feel as tired as I was supposed to be. But I went to bed, anyway, and fell asleep with a strange feeling that I had just arrived from a meeting with friends.

And then I dreamed. . .

I dreamed that I had been published. I had published fiction, perhaps my latest, I'm not sure. But I had been published, and it felt extraordinary to have a story in print.

Well, I remember when I got two copies of Operation Legacy. Professor Barrett mailed them to me, because I couldn't attend the signing. I opened it and went to the cafe upstairs to get coffee or just something to eat, I don't remember precisely; but I opened that anthology, and read my story (or, the story of the veteran I interviewed) as if it were written by someone else. I remember an acquaintance asked me what I was reading, and I proudly showed it to her. “It's my story. I got published,” I said and the feeling was extraordinary, it was amazing.

But, strangely, the way I felt in my dream was different. The way I felt when I got Operation Legacy was accomplished, proud that I finally saw one of my things in print. But, in my dream, I felt complete. This probably will be a very unfair remark about contributing to Operation Legacy, but when I read my piece of non-fiction one of the first thoughts I had was “I hope one day I'll be able to publish my stories.” And then, in my dream, the feeling I had was that I felt I had just fulfilled my biggest ambition. You know that old expression people say, something like “oh, if I die today, I'll die a happy person.” That's precisely how I felt in my dream last nigh. . . this morning.

And in my dream I believe my publisher, which happened to be Random House (..!), told me I would be going to Tokyo, I guess, on a tour. And I was very excited. I believe Michael and my mother would be coming along. And there was some other place I'd go to, but now I can't remember where.

This afternoon, I am feeling quite good about myself, which is strange. Strange, though, in a good way. I could still be either living my dream and thinking it to be real, which is a little alarming – or, and this second idea pleases me the most, somewhere in the world of dreams I am writer publishing fiction. So, if everything goes wrong in this concrete world, I could always say that in some other dimension I am what I've always wanted to be.

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