Black Illumine Dream

Last night I had a vivid dream which has stayed with me. These are the details:

I am pursuing a job as a producer with a major Hollywood film studio. In order to achieve this goal, I am trying to exchange a friendly word with a producer. I wander down a safe, quiet, residential neighborhood looking for him. There is no one else around. It could be a 1950s suburbia film set where the actors and the crew are out of town. I turn off of the road and stroll across the manicured lawn of a midcentury home. Swinging open a wood gate along the side of the home, I see a side door into the garage. I slip into the garage. It is dark and overstuffed with old car parts, carpet rolls, and boxes. There are also crew working in there, though they are too dark for me to identify them. A man in a turtleneck and trousers who looks like Peter Bogdanovich steps up to me. He stands underneath a solitary light bulb that illuminates him. He is reserved, professional, and a bit aristocratic in his mannerisms, but he seems affable enough with me. The one word he says that is clear is “illumine.” He may have said “jurisdiction illumine.” He agrees with a slight nod of his head to introduce me to one of the higher ups.

Later, I am inside the garage of another suburban home. There is even more crew milling around. They are preparing for a shoot, but again are working in the dark. There is a cigar chomping, balding, fat, ogre type standing closer to the side door. He is lighted in part by the sunlight outside and the embers from his cigar. He is a smiling, glad handing, phony, but I am happy to get his ear for a moment. He is friendly with me but noncommittal. He seems careful never to extend himself too much in any one direction.

There is an elderly black woman in a brown and white polkadot dress. She is seated on a bench in a park. The ground beneath the bench is a circle of mud. Beyond the mud circle is dry grass, and beyond that is an endless forest of dying trees and thorn bushes. It is a terribly hot afternoon with flies overhead. The woman is minding her own business when a heavyset, young, black man in a chauffeur’s cap walks up to her. He laughs at her, and calls her a “nigger.” He thrusts an empty bowl into her hands, which she puts on her lap. She looks up at the bully but says nothing, while he continues to laugh at her.

Later, the elderly black woman is in her home. She is dressed in a feminine sailor’s suit. Her sailor pants are cuffed at her knees. She has curled her hair and put makeup on her face. She is happy, flirtatious, and fun, and looks and moves considerably younger than her advanced years. She is the hostess of a party, and I am one of the guests. I converse with her in her foyer and find her to be really charming. The other guests are inside her kitchen and living room. I cannot tell much about them, but the home is definitely upper class, well decorated, and brightly lit.

The younger black bully in the chauffeur’s cap is seated on the park bench alone. This time, he has an oversized backpack that is pressing down on his shoulders. He is very hot, sweaty, and uncomfortable. He keeps looking up at the flies and holding up a hand to keep out the overbearing sun. The elderly black woman, still dressed in her chic and sexy sailor’s suit, walks up to the bully. She hands him back the empty bowl. She does not say a word. He looks up at her and snarls. She walks away and leaves him alone.

I am watching the black bully with the empty bowl from the side of the mud circle. As I continue to watch, I am lifted into the air, so I am looking down and moving away from what happens next.

Still clutching the empty bowl, the bully stumbles forward and lands on his knees. The mud circle is now dark brown and wet. The bully’s backpack bursts, and human bones fly out every which way. The bully is submerged beneath the human bones, while mud slaps up against him. The park is sliding in on itself and slithering into a deep abyss.

Published by Michael Sean Erickson

I write, act, and produce films in Los Angeles. Everything else is conjecture.

3 thoughts on “Black Illumine Dream

    1. I do not know. No doubt, dreams express through archetypal images a subconscious mind wrestling with herself. It is for this reason that both Freudian and Jungian psychoanalysts may endeavor to decipher them. At the same time, I also think that dreams are windows to another world distinct from our subconscious minds. This other world is less amenable to our interpretation precisely because it is “another world,” and not simply an expression of our own. To the extent the dream is the latter, it belongs to the purview of the witchdoctor or the mystic more so than the psychoanalyst. To the extent the dream is the former, the opposite applies: The psychoanalyst is more worthwhile than the seer. The real conundrum is in deciphering the subconscious elements of a dream from the otherworldly elements of the same dream. It is like the so called near death experience. My sense is that the near death experience is a kind of super dream: It is both a hallucination conjured up by a brain in the process of dying, and it is also simultaneously a transition into an actual afterlife that has nothing to do with the dying brain. This seems to be internally contradictory, and yet it makes sense when you think about it. If indeed dying is a transition from this life to some other life, then we should not be surprised that the dying brain generates a hallucination meant to ease and to guide our soul’s movement from this life to the next. The fact of the hallucination in itself does not negate the reality of the afterlife. My point is that the near death experience is both a this worldly neurological phenomenon and an otherworldly soulful phenomenon. I would say the same of all of our dreams: They are neurological, and they are also supernatural. Deciphering the neurological from the supernatural, and vice versa, for the sake of a cogent interpretation may not be possible and, frankly, may be beside the point. For perhaps dreams are meant to be experienced, rather than interpreted, much like loving a play without reading a critical interpretation of it, or loving a song without knowing anything about the lyrics or the arrangement. Having said that, the fact that I write down the more interesting dreams does indicate a desire to preserve as well as to experience. Why preserve after the experience is over? Surely, it is not to experience again the same dream, for that is impossible. Even reading a highly detailed account of the dream is not going to conjure up again the exact same images and feelings I had upon first dreaming that dream. Nevertheless, recounted dream details provide me images that I may use in my poetry and stories sometime later. It is like maintaining a scrapbook of miscellaneous impressions that a writer may or may not use in a totally different way some other time. Returning to the Black Illumine Dream, I believe that the images have something to say about my subconscious mind, no doubt, but I also believe that the black woman on the park bench and the bully who later falls into the mud hole are real beings in some other universe. I was given a partial glimpse into their lives, and in the case of the black woman I was actually a guest with whom she interacted briefly at her party. Why did I step into that other universe for a moment? I have no idea, but I suspect we all step in and out of other universes a lot more than we consciously realize. Our souls are promiscuous party lovers apparently. They are always on the scent of the next big scene and thinking of ways to hop the gate, to snatch a cocktail, and to nibble on an appetizer or two. They may or may not have been formally invited. It really does not matter, for they are not going to remain that long before wandering off for the next party down the road.


  1. Haha our souls are promiscuous party lovers.
    That’s amusing. Ive never seen my dreams like that.
    I usually wake up knowing or having an idea of where that dream came from. But I have also thought that in another world I must be a movie director because my dreams are wild and very intense and dramatic.
    The whole gun pointed at my head and I can’t scream kind of dreams
    Which is always interesting to me.
    Why can’t my dream self ever run or scream? It’s like she is locked in there and then I wake up before anything violent actually happens. I mean I’m grateful for waking up. But still it is odd.

    Liked by 1 person

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