With Wild And Turquoise Eyes
Dreamed c. 1950 by Joan-Lee Woehler Lasalle
Last night I slew a dragon,|
with wild and turquoise eyes
He clanked his coppered scales
Across the startled skies;
Into the deep and feathered dark
The way from night to sunlight,
"Stand back, stand back, you shall not pass,
And there he lay in silence,|
As I upon my bed...
And his mouth was a crimson fountain,
And his chest ran streams of red.
Last night I slew a dragon;
And once again the balustrade
But thin the sleep, and shallow.
Joan regrets, even grieves, at the dragon-slaying. And soon learns its futility. The theme goes back centuries, of course--the Hydra sprouting new heads. In Joan's dream, killing the dragon just means that all of Nature now becomes dragonlike, besieging her ego's citadel.
Jung's advice, of course, was to invite the dragon in and ask what it wants. But that's hard to do with a sharp sword in hand and knights watching--for habit and convention and others' expectations can prod one as sharply as dragon-claws.
So often, we give in, and slay our dragons. To our grief.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joan-lee was for decades a drama teacher in Healdsburg and Santa Rosa, California; but she wrote this much earlier, while a student at Stanford around 1950. She included it in a book of poems she made for her friends, one of whom was my mother (who drew Joan's portrait, right.)
In 2007, long after Joan's death, my mom found the book. Knowing my interest in dreams, she gave it to me. As far as I know it's Joan's only surviving dream-record (and if I'm wrong, please email me! I'd like to read more of her dreams.)
I was startled by its content because I'd had a bizarre dream (and this is me saying bizarre!) about Joan, called Grampa has Spoken), that associated her with a small, fierce but friendly dragon. Yet I dreamed it years before I knew her dream-poem existed.
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