Dream of: 21 July 1990 "Shattered Panes"

I was with my grandmother Mabel in the House in Patriot. I hadn't seen her in a long time and she seemed to have deteriorated considerably since the last time I had seen her. Sitting in a chair, she explained that she could hardly walk anymore, and that she spent most of her time in the chair. I thought I would like to take her for a walk because she needed some exercise. But I saw it would be futile to try.

I had some things in the House which I needed to pack to take with me when I left. We looked around for some cardboard boxes to put them in. I even walked upstairs to look. I was surprised by how disorderly the rooms appeared upstairs. It was almost spooky. I walked back downstairs and continued packing.


I was in a classroom where I apparently had begun taking writing lessons. I had been given an assignment of writing a paragraph about some wooden toy-like objects in the classroom. As I worked on the paragraph, the writing itself seemed physical, as if I were putting the wooden objects together in certain order, rearranging them to improve the paragraph. I felt as if each time I rearranged them, that the paragraph seemed better and that I was indeed learning something about writing.

The teacher was a woman whom I seemed to know from somewhere. She was perhaps in her mid 40s and had an average build. She walked into a side room and I followed her. I wanted to talk to her about what I was doing, but when I opened the subject she seemed unconcerned and gave me the impression the exercise was over. I felt let down and told her I wanted to continue. I explained that the entire nature of writing could be compressed into one paragraph. I was looking in my mind for images to help explain what I was doing and I thought of two small, flat boards being pounded together by a single nail.

As I continued speaking, I looked out a window of the room and saw two men who appeared to be working on the yard. They seemed to be manual laborers, perhaps in their 30s, who had no other purpose in life than to perform servile work. The idea of what they were doing and what I was trying to do made me suddenly become very emotional and tears began to form in my eyes. I felt like such a failure. At my age I was just learning the rudiments of writing. How could I possibly become a writer at this point in life?

For the first time the women responded to me and seemed interested in what I was experiencing. She walked over next to me and asked me to tell her. I blurted out I was 34 years old and I tried to express how I felt. I sat down and looked outside a door, where I saw some large panes of glass leaning against a wall. The panes had been hit and shattered in places, but were still standing. That seemed to somehow express how I felt. I thought the woman felt satisfied I was experiencing what I was, but I couldn't be certain.


A man was telling me a story about a girl who was apparently the daughter of his wife by another man. The girl had disappeared and she hadn't been able to be found for several hours. Finally it was discovered the father of the girl had taken her by force to another state. The man told me that he had reported it to the authorities, but that they had seemed uninterested, and had only asked questions such as whether the father was serious about keeping the girl. The man now wanted to know if there was anything I could do to help get the girl back.

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