Waking Finnegan

“We are such stuff as dreams are made of, and our whole life is rounded with a sleep” ~ Shakespeare

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Location: zurich, Switzerland

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Argyle Dream (This Side)


Last night I hurt my foot when I got my shoe wedged in the treads of a tractor tire. I'd been walking around with C in Paris looking for a particular restaurant supply shop (where they sell phenomenal cheese graters) when suddenly she went this way and I went that, and I ended up kicking tractor tires and getting stuck.

The showroom (where I found myself lost) had an astonishing assortment of specialty farm gear on display. Diggers, cutters, choppers, whackers, splicers, pickers, seeders you name it, you betcha.

A huge sausage-faced Republican (who'd appeared from the other side of the two-way mirror at the back of the showroom) was eyeballing me peripherally. He had on a "farmers suit" like overalls; a pair of "huckster's duds" to help him cheat the local folks out of their hard-earned money.

Now both of us began moseying around the tractors and peeping at each other through the seat springs. I said to myself "Start kicking tires, Finn, I'll decoy him good". And so I began a wild dance around the showroom, thumping one set of treads after another, eventually losing both the shamus and myself. I dervished myself into that gone netherworld of billowy dream inquiry beneath the covers, waking up momentarily to take mental notes.

Suddenly he was looking down on me from the other end of the steam shovel. Out of surprise and sudden fear I swung my foot hard and wedged my boot into the big tread and then cowered and cringed like a trapped animal, knowing he'd be on top of me to snap my neck. From within my pretzel shape I willed a woman's voice from the loudspeakers, blaring a falsetto "Check OK on 13"! And then he was gone.

I pulled on my boot repeatedly, but the shiny tiled floor didn't allow me to get a proper grip, and so I gave a violent jerk and freed my foot and saw that my socks were mismatched (sanitary on the left, and Argyle on the right). I thought "What's wrong with you, Finn? Why can't you even get your socks in order?"

It was then that I noticed the wet Argyle. I'd kicked a set of steel-flanged "ice tires" and now
my sock was dripping with blood.

I peeled the sock off slowly, revealing a horrid, bone-exposed gash that ran from my heel to my big toe. The Argyle had sopped up everything, leaving my foot looking drained, like that of a corpse. The other oddity was the rim of the wound, whose purpled edges gave it the hideous appearance of a metatarsal grin with lip-liner.

I wrung out the sticky Argyle and started swabbing the blood around on the white tiles,
finger-painting little rocket ships and spirals while worrying about my wound, the ensuing infection and worse---that Republican huckster who'd disappeared behind the two-way mirror.

End of Argyle Dream (This Side)

Go to Argyle Dream (That Side Part 1)

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Oma God Dream


Poking my fingers through a linty hole inside the left pocket of my leather jacket. I'm searching for a tram ticket which I'm sure I'd purchased---where is it? The tram is heading my way, disrupting orderly puffs of steam that rise through vents at the edge of the canal. It is a European city, but neither Venice nor Amsterdam. I'm scanning the street signs and store windows for a clue, but everything is lit up in English. Trying to remember the canals in London. Did Dickens ever mention any canals?

In the near distance, I can see the tram passing a series of curb vents emitting steam. As it passes the last one, I remember about my ticket and continue fingering through the lintballs and sand deposits.

The vehicle looks different upon closer inspection. The front---shaped like the prow of a ship---gives the crowd of people around me a rush as it proceeds to pass. Gleaming and filled with demi-monde hustlers in suits, the first set of cars glides past, sloshing up a miniature set of beach breakers over my shoes. Everyone reacts in spontaneous disapproval to this sole-soaking. What sort of city is this? What town would create a hybrid oddity that moves along underwater tracks and whose eddies wet the tramsters and make the curbs disappear? Perhaps one of the Hanseatic cities like Novgorod or Bruges? (Here I am half-awake wondering about Hamburg, and if I saw anything there that led me to this Hanseatic thread.)

I feel very cold. I'm worried about my soaked socks and remind myself to wring them out when I get aboard. Weakness consumes me.


Pneumonia


And there is something medieval in this waterway. Something with the water rats.


Plague


By the time the rear end of the hybrid vehicle arrives (it is part train, part tram and part vaporetto) I realise I have to piss. Should I get aboard or should I look for a pissoir and wait for the next one? But I'm suddenly herded forward by the tramsters which makes my indecision moot. "Ok, the next station...my coat pocket...the ticket...my wallet? Wallet? Where's my wallet!" The conductor is forward checking tickets in the demi-monde compartments. I've still got plenty of time, but I need to find my ticket...money...wet shoes and socks...got to piss...mysterious city...

Sometime later I'm aboard the number 13 tram in Zürich. A hefty Oma (German for grandma) is now assisting me out of my damp clothes. I'm naked, but nobody seems to notice or care. There's something comforting and warmly firm and commanding about this buxom old gal that makes me trust her. She's quite animated for such a big woman. "Ja, Sie müssen Ihre nassen socken ausziehen, mein Junge. Legen Sie diese über den Kachelofen da drüben!" (Yes, you have to take off your wet socks and lay them over the tiled oven over there.) She's got my back, this Kitchen Queen of the Night mit Kompressstrumpfhosen. I'm not sick. Everything is old world and good. Ah, Europe!

But while I'm kicking back and wondering at my nakedness, I realise Grandma's got other plans. When she opens her carpet bag I spy her deluxe enema kit complete with hose, stop cock, and rectal tips and I wake up immediately.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Roadrunner Dream


I'm chasing a stub-hooked tetherball down Oxnard Street in North Hollywood.

This reminds me of a dream from long-ago where I chased a ball I'd snapped clean off the playground pole, hitting it with comic book strength and sending it soaring into the blue sky while all the girls were watching. I said "I'll be right back!" and transformed myself into
Roadrunner.

I chased that ball down with spinning legs, all the while bobbing forwards, backwards and sideways with my torso. I homed in on it with my two-way Dick Tracy watch and continued socking and kicking and chasing it over roofs and trees and buildings. I kicked it well beyond the neighborhood oh yes I did. I sent it clear across the City of Angels into Death Valley where I deftly scooted past Rattlesnakes, Gila Monsters and Horny Toads. I drop-kicked and pursued that ball well beyond the Sierras---sent it sailing over the Grand Canyon towards barking prairie doggies and waving Wheaties fields. I saw Huckleberry steamboats and kicked the ball clean over the Mississippi and then hightailed it for Chicago and New York.

And then I woke up and realized I wasn't so fast.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Sonic Dream


An epic dream of buffeting winds, Kitty Hawk dunes and sudden basaltic cliffs towering over tilted Irish seas. There's an easterly on the western seaboard and a westerly where I am standing. I am able to shift my coastal location by closing my lids, turning round and blinking. I see the shifting locales as though looking through the viewfinder of a movie camera; my eye movements acting like a "shutter-drive", controlling not only the speed of the scene, but also the era. Rapid eye movements, which feel mechanically controlled, create a sensation of clarity. But when I switch to myself and try to control things, the sea, the dunes and the windy grasses begin to flicker as though I were watching a silent film. I practice at various speeds in order to shorten the divide between this machine-self and me, sensing that I'll be able to master it. My feelings, in spite of the bodily uncertainty, are curiously hopeful.

Later, a spectral newsreel-like montage of great personalities, inventors and inventions. Edison, Duke Ellington, Laurel and Hardy, Rod Serling, the Wright Brothers, Alexander Graham Bell, the Transatlantic Cable...the Transatlantic Cable. I'm obsessed about that early communication tether---my lucid mind is now envisioning those first cable telegrams and their sonic vibrations....could they be heard by whales and dolphins? And if so, how did they interpret those curious clicks? And are echo-locating bats the silent night agents who channel this cetatean sonar? Are they night beasts who relay and translate these codes through berries and blood?


I'm making mental puns about "reeling minds". Nervous laughter. But the other half of me is seriously exerting to manage the action by slowing everything down. The practical me wants to construct something magnificent and lasting from all this.

Later again, a figure is calling---waving distress signals through the windy ground mist. But I cut myself off from this "other". I can sense "it" trying to distract me from the thread of this bicoastal jump-cutting which feels like travelling through the carotid artery of sprung gnosis. There is something holy and profound here, something dependent upon my ability to will it into being through hard work. Yes, hard work! I begin blinking rapidly again, hoping that my cyborg self can call up the right set of actions to put this beast together---make it something unambiguous...transparent.

Back on a blustery Kitty Hawk dune facing the Donegal bluffs on the other side of this dream. I know I will manage this time. This is not like the other dreams.

Later still, the letters are freshly painted over the battened placard. The sign itself is quite old and pocked with a beautiful patina of salt and rust. It is standing astride a stony well, where I can see a hanging bucket attached to a cable.