Cartography of the subconscious

When I woke I discovered my heart cast shadows longer than dreams in places where we moved as children, cured of fear, and never looked back.

Sometimes when I wake I write down my dreams, or the bits I can remember. If I wake with the territory intact, I map it. The drawings are invariably simple, as the tools of consciousness are ill-suited to convey that kind of shifting complexity*, but it’s fun.

I found some bits of writing from several years ago; notes for a project I never quite started:

The terrain of the interior is known only in the abstract. The places there are monumental and organic– even cities seem not altogether manmade.

I’ve never seen boundaries, or approached an edge of it. Unlike a world in the round, the interior has a precipice beyond which lies a void. Or it may be a sphere, inversed— the center of which now lies at the edges of everywhere, for the laws of physics apply only as far as they are known and believed true.

dream map

The map is drawn as each footfall hits the ground; comes into existence ceaselessly. It’s fluid. Stars by which to navigate wink into existence with every step— constellations formed against losing one’s way in the darkness (but are soon forgotten).

The interior is never in focus all at once. Places obscured for a time will likely be redrawn, subtly or altogether, by the next time (or if) they come back into view.

dream blueprint

  • Edited to add: This is absolutely untrue; it’s what all of art is for, ultimately, but when time is of the essence, it can be true. Depends on one’s mindset, and one’s intention in the moment. These things percolate and eventually can at least come close to expressing the under-explored territories; that’s the goal, difficult as it can be. 

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