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Illness

Weird dream diseases. Oh, there are some real ones here, and some fever dreams, and plenty of practical dream-advice about illness. But there's a perverse creativity to dream diseases, a black comedy akin to the more imaginative horror films, in which the point seems less to convey a specific message than to avoid cliches--an attitude saying "Hmm, now there's an image! I've NEVER done anything like THAT..."

So try to be a bit more appreciative, the next time your dream-flesh dissolves into bugs or bus tickets. Somewhere, a shy part of your brain may be up on a dream-stage, stuttering and thanking its fellow convolutions as it accepts an Oscar of Dreams for special effects.

RELATED TOPICS: diagnostic dreams - dreams with healing advice - bodywork - nutrition - weird doctors and medical procedures - shamans - miracles - AIDS - environmental illness - disability and deformity - insanity - death - See also the full INDEX OF SUBJECTS.

What this site is - Add your dreams! - How to read blurbs - Ratings - Copyright - Downloading - The World Dream Bank has 2300 dreams plus 1000 more pages on dreamwork, shamanism, surrealism, fantasy, worldbuilding, creativity and genius. Site © Chris Wayan 2001-2013.



AMAZON A(U)NTS: by Wayan; 1997/10/28, a nightmare.
I camp in the Amazon but in the morning find I slept on top of something disturbing...
ASHES, ASHES: by Wayan; 1995, nondream digital painting.
Gaea dances the children's rhyme. I just hope we don't all fall down...
BEAST BIRTHS: by Wayan; 1989/9/19, a dream of family secrets.
My family has a hidden gene for incest--and griffins. When I bring the family skeleton from the closet...
CAUTION: MENTIONS RAPE, INCEST
BEET: Five Dreams One Night: by Wayan; 2013/10/30, Halloween dreams as minipoems
Parasites, Rambo, giant beets (or fetuses?), an exhibitionist and a living statue advise me on my love life...
CAUTION: NUDITY
BERYL BORROWED IT: by Wayan, 1986/3/8, an absurd dream.
My friend Beryl borrows my ass and legs to become a centaur so she won't fall over. I want them back, so...
CAUTION: CRUDE AND STUPID
BERYL'S DOG DAYS: by Wayan; 1988/1/25, a psychic dream farce.
My friend Beryl wants me to help rob a bank, so she can cut off her breasts and be a great opera singer...
BROKE LIKE GLASS: by Katherine Mansfield; 1919/12/15, a warning-dream.
A long terrible shiver, and my whole body broke like glass. I may live months, but in that dream I died...
CLAIRAGONY: by a Philadelphia woman, August 1951, a sympathetic heart attack with one crucial error in its ESP
I had a heart attack--but in minutes, it vanished! Then the phone rang. I knew at once my dying mother was gone. But...
CROSSTIME HEALTH RISK: by Wayan; 1999/7/23, a warning dream of parallel worlds.
A man learns to hop between time-branches, but like all transportation, this has epidemiological risks...
DEAD, ALIVE, DEAD: by a Minnesota teacher; well before 1960, a predictive... something.
Mrs Brown was dead; I recalled helping at her bedside. But my mother insisted she was alive, and that I'd never met her! Then...
MY DEWCLAW: by Wayan; 1997/6/30; dreams within dreams within dreams
Body after body is peeled away revealing truth inside truth...
CAUTION: GROTESQUE
THE DIEBACK: by Wayan; 1998/10/12, an ecological warning dream.
A plague begins on terraformed Mars and spreads to Earth. Population biology made it inevitable...
CAUTION: OFFSTAGE POPULATION CRASH
DIPHTHERIA SPECK: by an Outback man; before 1961, a diagnostic dream with a tight deadline
I dreamed our physician said our son had diphtheria. When I woke, we found a tiny white spot in his throat. But by the time the doctor arrived...
DISEASE OF THE HEART: by Virginia Woolf; 1929/11/2, a false diagnostic dream--or is it?
I dream I have just six months to live. I go through a dozen phases and moods, preparing for death...
FEVER HILL: by Wayan; 1991/4/13, a comic Buddhist nightmare.
My fever-dreams manifest physically and mess up my whole neighborhood. Seismic inspectors arrive...
FEVER DREAMS: by Wayan; 1993/9/8, a set of wild feverdreams.
While my body expels a kidney stone, weird scenes happen on the astral plane. At least I get to dip the pope.
CAUTION: PAIN, PEE, POPE
FIGHTING A VIRUS: by Wayan, 1998/11/21, a diagnostic nightmare.
Coming down with a virus, I dream of a guy who INSISTS we must fight, it's just so FUN...
FISHERGIRLS: by Wayan; 2.6M, 42 illus.; 1996/7/15; a sexy dream epic.
I had a spectacular dream one night, that lasted many days in dream-time--a true other life. It wasn't Earth, and we weren't human.
I was a teenage lemur, sailing with two friends into unknown waters--a rite of passage. I woke on deck deep in the night, my friends curled around me, and realized I didn't WANT to pass the test, be declared a grown woman, marry and have pups. I loved my girl friends. In a world lacking the very word, I was groping toward queerdom. Sailing into unknown waters! "Here be dragons," the old maps say. And they were right...
If 2600K is too big to load, try it in parts: 1: HOME, 650K, 2: VOYAGE, 1200K, 3: BACK 750K.
CAUTION: NUDITY, SEX, QUEER TEEN ANGST, ANTI-FUNDAMENTALISM
FIVE HEARTS: by Wayan; dreamed 1989/1/11; sexy psychic unicorn dream-comic (text only: FIVE HEARTS)
I'm a nurse pulled through a glowing well to a world ruled by a five-hearted unicorn, who wants me to...
CAUTION: NUDITY, SEX FANTASIES, LONGING, MELANCHOLIA
FLYING UNICORNS' GIFTS: by Lily Michaud; 2007/9/5, an advice-dream inside a flying dream
Flying unicorns hang out with me and my friends, sending us dreams full of useful advice--and more concrete gifts...
FOOT CREVASSE: by Jenny Badger Sultan; 2009/7/11; a dreampainting from the Box of Dreams
I dream my foot has a huge bloody crevasse. But I study it calmly...
FRIDA'S PRISON PAINTINGS: by Wayan; 2010/11/19, a Frida Kahlo-inspired dreamlet
Frida's battered sister Cristina Kahlo dances nude and gets jailed by the Office of Homeland Security. Frida paints her in prison...
GIRL WITH A PROBLEM: by Wayan; 1997/4/12, a surreal dream.
I date a girl with a mysterious syndrome, but soon I become a monkeyfaced con-man. And SHE becomes...
HAND ME THE MATCHES!: by Wayan; 1984/9/25, a predictive dream.
My sisters and I try to kill kidnappers by setting fires. Dumb, huh? The next day I fight a virus--with fever!
HEAD ON MY TABLE: by Lauren Watley; 2011/2/16, a creepy dream-image with depth
After a day of troubling conflicts over race and art, I dream I'm handed a hot, heavy, mossy head--is it art, or is it alive?
HEADEGG (Black-Eyed Bird of Pain): by Wayan; 1983/10/24; acrylic painting of a headache-trance.
I was cartooning with a headache. It took over and started drawing for me...
HEPBURNING: by Wayan; 1984/8/1, a nightmare on repression.
Kat Hepburn burns inside as passionate aliens take over our souls. How can we expel them before...
HERSELF IN REVERSE: by Wayan; 2013/6/13, three surreal future-prompting dreamlets
1: I'm in a theater complex meeting weird big-eyed ballerinas, and suddenly know I'll be choreographing for them someday soon...
2: A sorcery student meets and somehow fuses with her powerful future self hurtling backward through time...
3: A squirrel-magician, too, meets his future self leaping back through time, and inoculates us all against a future plague with a milder fever...
CAUTION: NOT FOR TOTAL SKEPTICS ABOUT PREDICTIVE DREAMS
HILLARY AND TEAL: by "A 24-Year-Old Californian Woman"; around 2008/2/28, an absurd political dream
Hillary Clinton hid her cancer, but the GOP found out. So a monster kidnaps Rainbow Brite, and...
HOLY ZEN MONK: by Wayan; 1978/4/24, a dream of suicide as political protest
I'm a Zen monk riddled with holes from a weird disease the government denies is real. So as a protest, I stand naked atop a wall and let the air-sharks take me...
CAUTION: SURREAL SUICIDE
HOW TO SURVIVE NUCLEAR WAR: by Maxine Kumin; early 1980s, a dream poem.
In Japan, sick in bed, reading a book on radiation sickness, I dream of a restorative ritual for trees...
CAUTION: GRUESOME
I BLUSH TO REPORT: by Wayan; 1986/12/11, two stupid dreams.
Two embarrassing dreams the same night: I learn why I don't have cancer and why I can't buy giant panties...
CAUTION: STUPID
THE INCEST DREAM: by Maxine Kumin; 1979? a dream-poem
While my brother was dying, I had a succession of vivid premonitory dreams about him...But I was in no way prepared for...
JACUZZI JAIL: by Wayan; 1979/10/12, a dream of parental poison.
My family has shackled my little sister in a hot tub full of carcinogenic bubble bath...
CAUTION: INCEST ISSUES AND A SLIGHTLY DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILY
JELLY REBELLION: by Wayan; 2008/8/19, a poem of a diagnostic dream, Dreamverse #9
I interview my own metabolism. Trouble in Cellville! I've got strikers and usurpers. But at least no invaders...
LEMON PEOPLE: by Wayan; 2008/8/11, a dream poem; Dreamverse #1.
A dream-fable of lemons who are really orange-people infected by a spore turns out to be about me...
LOUSE: by Wayan; ink, 1982/5/21: an embarrassing true story.
Getting rid of lice was easy. Harder was quelling the gossip and rumors from my co-workers and boss...
CAUTION: A LOUSE OF A BOSS
LOVE OF MY LIVES: by James Lyon; 2014/5/25, a life-spanning dream.
I live two complete lives with the same woman in my dreams, then wake up next to her...
MALWARE IN THE BRAIN: by Wayan, 2017/12/27, a possibly predictive dream.
I dream that tourists in our town use brainware to navigate and translate, but it's infected. Turns you fascist. Whaaaat?...
Next day, the FBI knocks on our door! Our web provider misidentified our home as a nest of internet criminals. Thanks, Comcast! Talk about malware...
THE MAN WHO MISTOOK...: by Wayan; 1995/9/19, an insane dream.
I'm just an ordinary guy, who beats his son so he'll grow faster, and sees tits on drinking fountains...
MOLLUSCUM FIBROSUM: by Havelock Ellis; c. 1920? A surreal dream of... sex? medicine?
A woman models an elegant gown baring her breasts. All five of them. Wait, those aren’t breasts, they’re...
MOM POPS: by Wayan; dreamed 1983/8/5, a dream of what happens when you defy your inner pessimist
The flood sickens my fuchsia bush. My mom says my fuchsia is hopeless, but I make up a treatment. When it works, well... read the title.
CAUTION: PUNS, EXPLODING MOM
MYRNA, LOOK AHEAD: by Myrna, drawn by her daughter Joey Epstein; before 1988, a dream of a revenant ghost’s advice
After Myrna’s husband gave up diabetes treatments to die at home, one night she felt him behind her in bed, and he whispered...
NEW LEVEL!: by "Julian"; 2006/5/22, 3 gamelike dreams in one night, two of them epic
My mom and I road-duel an alien beetle, then investigate a deepspace Marie Celeste; then I spy for the Angevin Empire to protect the Crown Jewels...
THE OLD YOUNG MAN: by Anna Kingsford; 1880/2/21, a dream of a step-in soul
Malaria nearly kills a talented young artist; he must retrain from scratch. Why? Well, he's not exactly himself...
PET ME DARE!: by Wayan; 1996/2/7, a sexy healing dream. (Small screen, slow loading? illus. text version
After whining all day that I lost my anima, I dream I'm petting a cat. Who purrs, and grows, and grows, and says...
CAUTION: PUSSY TROUBLE
THE PLAGUE-CURE: by Wayan; 1996/1/1, a diagnostic dream that worked.
After weeks of headaches I dream of a fatal, mosquito-borne plague. Humanity looks doomed till my friends devise a folk remedy...
PLESIOSAUR: by Wayan; 1985/9/5, a medical dream.
An itchy patient of mine insists he's turning into a four-headed man-eating plesiosaur. He left one thing out...
POD WAR: by Wayan; 1979/10/14, an "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" dream
Emotionless pod-people surround the last free humans. I fight for humanity, but I'm not human or pod--I'm...
POPEYE MUSCLES: by Wayan; 1986/7/14, a grotesque dreamtale.
My body turns protean: big Popeye muscles pop out as needed, relaxing into stick-figureness...
THE PRODIGY-ALLERGY LINK: by Wayan; 1994/7/21, a clipping and reactions
Child prodigies may develop allergies due to immunosystem damage from too much testosterone in utero...
RIVERBANK BLISS: by "Anonymous #11"; c. 1920, a mood-predicting dream
Eleven years after I dreamt of that green dress and green riverbank and dreamy day, I was convalescing in...
THE SEA WOLF'S BRAIN: by Wayan; 1999/11/21, a psychic dream.
For years the Sea-Wolf enslaved me. He said I had to fight him and win to be free. I'm ready at last...
SHAPESHIFTER FEVER: by Wayan; 1989/1/30, a dream poem.
A summer love affair with a shapeshifting alien turns awkward when she gets a high fever, and...
CAUTION: UGH!
THE SKIN'S COMPLAINT: by Wayan; 1996/11/17, a dreamtale.
A huge rubbery mass of skin complains I made it sick. I get tired of its whining, and...
SNAKE PACKAGE: by Jenny Badger Sultan; 2007/5/27
I am given a dehydrated package of dried snake to insert in my vagina. Inside it will unfold and come to life...
CAUTION: KIDS, DON'T TRY THIS AT HOME!
SNAKES AND CENTIPEDES: by Russ Thornton; 2008/11/1, a shared/telepathic dream.
Two snakes fight as centipedes emerge from under rocks. I tell my best friend. Next day her co-worker tells her the same dream...
SNOT-BIRD FORGERY!: a gross dream by Samuel Pepys, 1667/6/29, and a nightmare by Thomas Macaulay, c.1857
Samuel Pepys dreamt of kidneystones, pee, come, & snot--or did he? Thomas Macauley dreams his niece confesses...
SPIRAL LAUGHTER: by Alder; 1953, a child's feverdream
The world is a whirlpool, a black and white spiral pulling me down toward a black hole, and it's laughing...
SPORECOUNT: by Wayan; 105K, 1990/1/5, a dreamtale on change-phases.
I'm a hot archeology student till I open the wrong tomb. A plague turns us into green moldy monsters...
CAUTION: DISEASE, DEATH, GRIEF, SHAME
STABBED ALIVE: by Roswila; 2007/10/9, a nightmare-poem
I defeat the knife-wielder, in spite the blade in my belly I can't pull out. I may have to let it be...
SUNLIGHT'S THE CURE: by Wayan; 1990/12/29, a dreamtale.
I find the cure for an alien plague, then visit the world it came from, to find it has a curious variant...
CAUTION: SEX CUSTOMS OF THE NEWT PEOPLE! MY COUSIN'S GAY WEDDING!
SWORD IN MY BACK: by Franz Kafka; 1915/1/19, a surreal but un-Kafkaesque dream.
I slept late and felt a bit stiff, but until my friends pulled it out of my neck I had no idea...
TAKE STOCK OF YOUR PELVIS: by Wayan; 1981/1/11, a symbolic not-quite-sex dream.
A friend, stockpiling for Armageddon, makes me see that I value something peculiar: the knowledge of...
CAUTION: LANGUAGE
THE TAPED WOUND: by Wayan; 1997/10/7, a dream on old tapes...
My wound's taped up, but hurts bad. I peel off the bandage... nothing! Gone. So I check my other body...
THREE-YEAR PREGNANCY: by Ithmonike of Pellene, ca. 320 BC? Two dreams of meeting an odd god.
I was barren. I asked Asklepios, God of Healing, to make me pregnant. Soon I was. And so I stayed--for 3 years, until...
TICHANE: by Wayan; 1993-4. Nondream digital "woodblock print".
What the world looks like when you have environmental illness, like me...
THE TIGER'S THROAT: by Wayan; 1994/4/12, a psychic dreamtale.
I'm walking down a tiger's throat, but it's not what you think. Diagnosis! My friend suddenly couldn't roar...
TOASTING FORK: by Charles Dickens, August 1843, a surreal tragicomic dream.
A gentleman clad but in a sheet notified me that an old friend had died of a terrible disease. What disease? Well...
TOUGH GLOVE: by Wayan; 1999/12/4, a dreamtale.
I finally find a way to safely indulge in heavy petting (as well as puns) with the cat...
TV DEVIL FLU: by Wayan; 1994/10/24, a short dreamtale.
A "friend" gives me her TV. Turns out there's a small-minded devil in it who cheats on all his deals...
THE 1200-STEP PROGRAM: by Wayan; 1987/12/17, an illustrated dreamtale.
I'm climbing a tower, as my dad, Apollo, drunk, throws bottles at me from the top, breaking bones...
CAUTION: DENIAL ABOUT ALCOHOLISM
UNHAPPY CAMPERS: by Wayan; 1997/9/1, a stupid dream.
How can a dream of a disastrous camping trip also be a medical diagnosis? It depends on your pun-tolerance...
UNICORN SURGERY: by Wayan; 1996/5/2, a warning dream.
After trimming a poem to Silky, my night mare, I dream well-meaning surgeons try to dehorn a unicorn...
VAMPIGS AND SMILES: by Wayan; 1991/12/9, an advisory dream.
Our landlady was a friend, but she broke our rental agreement. Talk, compromise, or rent strike?
THE VIDEOGRAPHER'S APPRENTICE: by Wayan; 165K, 1994/7/29, a predictive/warning dream.
Blondie Wiggle builds a Video Igloo. But I'm allergic--TV kills me! A BAD omen for our video project...
CAUTION: TV KILLS (BUT YOU KNEW THAT)
WAR IN THE RING: by Bruno Oliveira; May 2011, a happy nightmare
War, monsters, plague and bombs are just thrills spicing up this city rising from a tropical sea on an alien world...
WHITE-FACED: by John A. Symonds; 1861/7/3, a mutation nightmare
My face was leprous white like parchment; my eyes shone with a cold blue eerie light. I shrieked "Papa, don't you know me?"...
WHY I LIE: by Wayan, 2016/10/7, a dream on privacy-guilt
Asked to share a bit about myself, I lie. Why? Not only are people like me illegal, we're believed to be impossible...
WILL I BE BITTEN?: by Jenny Badger Sultan; 2009/3/15; a predictive dreampainting from the Box of Dreams
A friend who's struggled with lymphoma invites me to sleep in a cave, but I worry I'll be bitten by a rattlesnake...
WIRES: by Wayan; 1957-1963, a recurrent childhood nightmare resolved by drawing, Dec 1999
I was bodiless but trapped. All I could see were these moving wires. Whenever a knot drifted by...
CAUTION: MADNESS, TORMENT, TELEPATHY, SEXUAL REBELLION
WORLDSTONES: fall 1895 & August 1898 by Mark Twain, and 2002/6/27 by Robert Moss; parallel dreams
Mark Twain dreams we're cells inside God, and writes of Huck Finn among the microbes. A century later, unaware of Twain's dreams, Moss...
ZOMBIE RUSH-HOUR: by Wayan; 1993/12/14, a predictive nightmare.
I'm in an apartment co-op in Silicon Valley where people share their skills--till rush hour begins...


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