Dream Residue

A dream is an elusive thing. Except when it’s not. There are some dreams that come racing back to memory the moment they are recalled. But there are others that remain on the periphery, standing close enough in our minds for us to recall that they existed but far enough away for us not to be able to recall anything about them. These dreams leave behind a residue, a suggestion, and they color the lens through which we view the rest of the day.

It is the intangible, indefinable feeling that all the cogs and wheels that make the mind work are not functioning in unison, that all our levels of self are not aligning properly. It is the mental equivalent of trying to put together a puzzle with too few pieces. In general, the puzzle is complete; we know what it’s supposed to be. But there is still something missing, something important. And the only way to dismiss it is to fall asleep again.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand–
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep–while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?
From “A Dream Within a Dream”
~Edgar Allan Poe

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