World Dream Bank
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dreamed 2008/2/16 by Wayan.
Dawn: good light, so I paint the Quenna Isles on my giant alien-planet model, Lyr.
Midday: go see Sleepwalking through the Mekong, a film on the band Dengue Fever as they tour Cambodia. They play Khmer pop classics from before Pol Pot. The lead singer's Khmer but the rest are Angelenos who liked the music and sing Khmer lyrics by ear. In Phnom Penh, they visit a music school in a slum of concrete high-rises, where students resurrect Cambodian culture, post-Holocaust. They hold a joint concert there in Shantytown. I liked that a lot.
Lunch: at the Sunflower, a Viet restaurant, squeezed between cute tattooed Burner girls and some filmbuffs still discussing "Sleepwalking through the Mekong". Then I wander 16th St; buy mangoes, look through used books, listen to an Andean band at the BART station.
Afternoon: edit Ms. Mira's submission to the World Dream Bank, True Love Is Choice. Then add some follow-up info to H. Barrington's A Musical Amoeba.
Evening: Watch Smallville on TV. A parade of hot girls with odd powers from exposure to kryptonite: Lois and her brilliant cousin Lana, Kera the blonde amnesic, and Chloe the healer. Uh-oh, now we gotta tour Lex Luthor's brain! A grim maze, where Lex's adult self terrorizes his own inner child, snarling "You're weak!" Why's Lex split into abuser & abused? His dad's to blame--a rich, powerful, brutal, paranoid liar.
Welcome to our shamanic seminar
taught by--Larry the smartass?
Saw him last--age ten--a mocker in
our gifted class. A smug kid then--
a smuggerdult now. But Larry backs
up his sneer--he fades to air.
Our final exam: hound his soul-tracks
through the unseen door.
Led by Larry's cackles, I slip through
labyrinths of fractals
brimming with innocent inmates who
each believes her reef
sealed, complete, concrete, and All--
blind to the Pleniverse!
My Earth a drop in the waterfall.
Now it feels a jail.
Fairy portals always lurked,
cracks in cosmic walls--
but all unmarked--they must be learned--
scent where physics fails!
Glow of legend oft surrounds
coral pores--and yet--
the mystereef entire, no one's
ever atlased out.
A lab in a gutted factory zone
where it's a crime to claim
coralheads may lie Beyond--
hence inventors hide--
But get results! Show me with pride
mice who leap crosstime
and back alive; attained Outside
through duct-tape miracles.
I start to map the shaman-field
under the skin mundane--
Sketched in pencil, all is pale;
magic thin and wan--
But not all weak is equal!
A gradient of spell
as radial as a gravity well!
a sorcery-whirlpool quite aware
of its fulcrum power.
Axle of the multiverse, replete
with a fey elite
smug as Larry, that gifted brat!
O their core glows amberlush--
shadows and apes, the rest of us
bit players! Expendable. Flat.
Hard to take. Did Larry ever mock
at all? These Fair Folk take the cake!
So rude beneath that slick-polite.
But as they intimate that I'm
a rustic wasting his betters' time--
a hedge-witch who really ought to toddle
home to the Halo and play with clods--
privately I topo-model
their typhoon-eye's magic too--
Map out the gods!
Wonders well undammable through
the walls, though Powers that Be
scorn the gradient--will not see
that all the worlds abutting theirs
(though dreary to their jaded eyes)
hide geysers in the seams--
artesian pools of seething dreams
roiling to rival the Core!
And this N-dimensional maze
has myriadly more
neighbors than the six there'd be
in a mere solid tower.
Toying with us as colonies,
the fae blithely state
only in Faerie can spirits flower:
barrens past the gate.
That myth has helped them dominate,
but faith in monopoly means
the Corish ignore the Halo's slums
where labs research their doom.
What's Larry's game? Elusive still
but I scent him in the room.
Was he a fae of the Core, Earth-slumming?
He sure had their hauteur!
Or did he spy and they caught him coming?
Suspect, but I'm unsure.
But Larry's spoor will have to wait,
even if it was kidnap.
These Corish imperials richly rate
a savage freedom-slap
and I itch to help the Halo apply it.
I'll join a lab and help them quiet-
ly learn just how to reliably pierce
this dreary sponge of a Multiverse
till that hoarded heartland power
spatters hot as aorta gore.
They got me that furious--those
assholes at the Core.
- Labyrinth of cubicles:
- the Cambodian music school in Sleepwalking Through the Mekong, in a Phnom Penh concrete highrise warren
- the Sunflower Restaurant has doors on two different blocks--it's two shops joined at right angles in back
- the maze inside Lex Luthor's mind!
- Classmate when I was nine. A mean practical joker with an IQ over 150. He may mean guilt-free cunning, suppressing empathy, not trying to fit in.
- Lex Luthor, another gifted kid, abused, splitting into a bully who wants to kill the real child-self he calls weak; again, suppressing empathy.
- Tracking Larry: 'pursuing open self-interest'? He may be a Jungian Shadow figure--my own full brainpower, that I repress day-to-day in the name of being nice.
- Gradient of magic:
- The dream echoes Roger Zelazny's fantasy series Nine Princes in Amber. Amber was the universe's heart; the further away, the less real you were. The more expendable! Zelazny mocked American exceptionalism by literalizing what real elites feel. Diana Wynne Smith's Chrestomancy novels explore the British equivalent (more subtly).
- The characters on Smallville have a range of paranormal talents due to various levels of krypton exposure. Not quite meritocracy... toxicocracy? Superhero myths dramatize the choices exceptions face; the conflicts between elitism--the pursuit of excellence with unearned gifts--and equal rights--how to raise the humble without crushing the exceptional?
- Magical arrogance vs basement labs:
- Lex, the essence of arrogance, gives Clark a tour of Lex's brain. Which bares his secret: how Lex's dad abused his wealth and power, crippling his son
- the basement labs where Gazans built homemade rockets to fire at the Israelis who've imprisoned them in the worlds biggest refugee camp
- The Khmer Rouge guiltlessly killed over a million because the bourgeois, the educated, the merely literate aren't human. Now slums house tiny schools trying to rebuild their murdered world.
- Magic universe: the evidence for psychic dreams I'm slowly collecting on the World Dream Bank. I'm editing Musical Amoeba, an apparent predictive dream, referring to a song the dreamer heard for the first time just after he woke!
- Rigid model with magic walled off, monopolized: how I often see magic in my life. I act as if ESP is only possible in dreams. But that's false; awake, I neglect intuitive warnings and prompts. To my sorrow and loss!
- ACTION: Act in my own interests! I don't have to be a snob like Larry or the core-folk or Lex Luthor. But act on hunches! If I don't give my urges room to breathe, anger will build up till rebellion's the only way. I'm close to that now.
- This is #14 of the Dreamverse project: every day, a dream-poem. But I slept badly and this morning forgot my dreams. So I went back a few months to this one--a dream so epic and troubling I couldn't tackle it then. Even now it took three days to write up. Whew!
A NOTE NEXT YEAR
Hard to write, hard to read--it's an unpleasant insight that the world is vaster than than we ever dreamed, but still run by jerks. With occasional Pol Pots.
But the dream says it doesn't have be. Magic's not constrained to dreams, whatever habit thinks! Miracles are possible even on the matterplane. Just harder. A... gradient.
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