Multiple Enthusiasms

Infinite jest. Excellent fancy. Flashes of merriment.

Dreams of inundation

Last night, I dreamt we fell into the ocean.

Last month, I did an interview over at the Lulu Book Review with its proprietor, awesome author Shannon Yarbrough. In it, Shannon asked me about the dreams I mentioned in my essay about what I saw on September 11th, 2001; for a long while before that day, I’d had dreams of Manhattan falling in some way or other.

Now, I seem to be dreaming of water, and of cities falling into it. The ground beneath my feet has given way at least three times in the past . . . well, I don’t really know how long; it took dreaming about it last night to remember I’d dreamt of it before. And the title of this post is a bit misleading; it’s not inundation like a wave or a tsunami. It’s just giving way.

I don’t know where I am in the dreams. Part of me thinks Los Angeles if only because Los Angeles is the only city I associate with falling into the ocean. There was an amusement park-type setting last night, and maybe a Ferris wheel, which may or may not have been Santa Monica pier . . .

I wonder if it’s because I feel I’ve become unbalanced lately. In many ways. I’ve been teaching and grading and studying so hard I haven’t had nearly as much time to write as I would like. I feel like I’ve gone a bit overboard on politics, here in the blog, in the past couple of weeks, but then again I think that’s because so many of my feelings about the upcoming election are tied to my feelings about September 11th. I know that in many ways (and especially in recent weeks) Obama is just politics as usual (mainly, I think, because he’s playing to undecided voters), and I know many disagree that he is a good candidate, but something about him hits me in the same place watching WTC 7 crumble down hit me. Something about him gives me hope in those places that day deflated.

And yes, I realize that’s more an emotional response than anything, but then again, McCain makes me anxious in the same way those apocalyptic dreams always have.

And again: I didn’t mean to talk about politics here. I meant to talk about dreams and disbalance, because I know we’re all a little exhausted by the whole process by now.

I found out, last week, my grandmother passed away. I don’t know if that has anything to do with these feelings and dreams. She was actually a grandmother-in-law, through marriage (my uncle’s mother), but she was still often present in my childhood, whether as the first house on our annual Halloween trick-or-treating adventures or at my cousins’ birthday parties (three cousins, three parties per year). But I don’t actually remember the last time I saw her; I know it was at the local supermarket, but I’ve returned home less and less these past few years, and Jersey feels farther away than ever. I couldn’t go to her viewing/funeral, but I think what bothers me most about that is that I couldn’t hug my aunt and shake my uncle’s hand. She had a full life 88 years long, children and even grandchildren she watched grow up, and my mother told me it’s a blessing for reasons of recent health, but still, mum mum Kit is no longer around, and I’m a little sad about that. I don’t remember mum mum Kit with hair any other color besides white, pulled so taut back it became an old-fashioned facelift, voice full of old cigarettes and bourbon forgotten years before.

Anyway, I’m going to try to move back from politics. I’m going to also be trying to do some more writing. My real writing, that is, not blogs. That’s not to say I’m taking a break; this doesn’t feel like I’ve felt when I’ve realized I need to walk away from the blog for a while . . . it’s different, somehow. I’d meant to talk about Lulu, but I may be saving that for a couple of weeks just yet, as I’m still trying to figure out the best thing to do with my book.

Hope you’re doing well.


  1. Hello there-

    At least you can remember your dreams, despite them possibly not being the kinds you want to remember for selfish reasons. I remember a time when I could recall my dreams quite vividly until I did a research paper on dream interpretation. It was as if I ruined them after that. Now, I’m lucky to wake up and remember even a hint of something I dreamed the night before.

    I know how you feel about writing. My roommate just got a new laptop and gave me his old one with the intention that I could go more mobile with my writing rather than being confined to my corner office in the dining room. I’m typing this reply on the lap top at the dining room table, my corner office just to my left, but at least I can see the TV from here. With maintaining the review blog, doing some pleasure reading for myself, and having to deal with recent changes at the 9 to 5, writing has gotten away from me. It’s that “rut” you’ve seen me mention on my blog where real life occupies too much of my time and the characters in my head aren’t taking shape. I either can’t find the time to write, or when I do have time it’s the last thing I feel like doing. The cursor and the blank screen seem too overwhelming. Having self-published a book and starting the review blog this year alone, I seem to think I should take a break but you know how it is…it’s like a drug. I feel the urge to create, to write, anything. Something.

    I have another manuscript finished which I wrote from August till New Years last year. Finished it on New Years Eve actually. I’ve polished it lightly off and on all this year. It sits in hard copy here on the table to my left as I type this…waiting for me to put this laptop to its intended use…instead my reply to you is turning into a short story….sorry…This next book will probably be the big project for next year.

    Did something happen with you and Lulu? I seem to recall you weren’t happy with them. Or did I dream that?

  2. @Shannon: yeah, one of the things about writing is it does tend to get away so easily. And it’s so weird the way it does so. I don’t regret self-publishing my collection, but I wish people would start thinking of self-publishing the way they think of indie rock or indie moves. Then again, I wonder if the blame for that isn’t on the part of many authors.

    And yes, a few things over the past couple of months have soured me badly toward Lulu, partly between me and them but mostly between them and others and mostly again on their part, themselves.

  3. I know that I, perhaps more then anyone, have made blogging requests of you. Some you have done and some you have not but in the end it’s up to you what you write. I might for instance request that you blog about Sexy manatees. I wouldn’t want you to blog about that if you were going to do it half assed. You should blog, write, jot down, and sing only about those things you feel like doing. To hell with everyone else and what they want, me included.

    I feel like you need a hug but since I can’t give you one physically I will give you one digitally. *HUGS*

  4. gothamgirl-

    Sexy manatees….hmmmm….there’s an image!

    Email me about Lulu. I’m interested in hearing more.

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