Tag Archives: dream journals

In The Early Morning When The Sun is Creeping … (CV)

“In the early morning when the sun is creeping

into my bedroom while I’m still sleeping …

Wake me up gently, wake me up slow …”

Wake Me Up Gently by Deirdre McCalla

"Dewy Leaf" photo by Aja Riggs

Deirdre McCalla’s song, “Wake Me Up Gently” has been stuck in my head since 1985 when I first heard it. It could easily be the Dreamer’s Official Anthem.

I remember as a teenager, hearing my mother say, “You’re so moody in the morning, I just try not to talk to you before 10 a.m.”

I felt misunderstood (well, of course I did, I was a teenager, after all! I ALWAYS felt misunderstood). But not in the usual way. This time I realized that what I was experiencing internally was vastly different from what my mother was observing.

I was moody. But the mood was quiet, distant, a world away. In a word: Dreamy.

When I wake  from a night’s sleep it’s like when a traveler returns from a 2-week intercontinental voyage. I need time to process, look over my snapshots, so to speak … paste images into my scrapbook. In my case I need time to reflect on the night’s dreams.

Early morning for me is a time to lie in bed and think about the dreams that just ended, write in my dream journal, eat my breakfast in silence, meditate if there’s time.

Alarm clocks are cruel, and the enemy of dream recall. A ringing phone, a loved one with a perfectly reasonable question or request … can’t it all wait an hour or two?


Sing it with me now! (Click the link below or the quote above to hear Deirdre sing it):

“Wake me up with a gentle love song on the radio … “


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The Question of Dream Journals — Take 2

I guess I still haven’t totally recovered from my move, because I’m still thinking of all those cardboard boxes filled with journals … dream and day journals. I wasn’t sure where to put them all in my new apartment; so one kitchen cabinet is crammed with boxes! (It’s a good thing I’m not a big cook – that space would be perfect for some nice CorningWare casserole dishes or whatever it is that lives in the cabinets of people who love to cook.) The rest are stacked in a closet.

Somehow the day journals don’t concern me, but I wonder about saving all those piles of pages of dream reports. A dream is so beautifully ephemeral, it almost feels wrong to save and store years and years of them. The dream barely wants to be remembered – (it slips out of consciousness as we roll over to turn off the alarm) – let alone reified.

And yet, thanks to those dream journals, I can tell you exactly what I dreamed on February 12, 2006, (well that’s cheating, that was one of those life-changing dreams that I don’t need to look up in a journal to recount image for image, but more on that another time), or November 1, 2009, or … you get the picture. Keeping all those dream journals feels like I’m idolizing something that should be let to breathe in and out of being in one glorious sigh. I want to have faith that the dreams will always be there, and last night’s dream is all I need for today. Each dream will be remembered for exactly the right amount of time and when it’s done serving the dreamer it will slip into the world of memories lost, along with all those breakfasts and car rides and trips to the grocery store that are easily and effortlessly forgotten.

Dreams are written on darkness in wisps of light – they are not carved in stone, they are not definitive statements. Perhaps they don’t want to be captured and caged on the page.

Hopefully, before my next move, I’ll have a clear decision about what to do with all those journals … whether I should set them free (shred? Burn? Recycle?) or box them up and put them on the moving truck yet one more time.  (Opinions please!)

Boxes of Journals


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Dream Journals

During a recent move I came face to face … literally … with the fact that I have accumulated nearly fifty journals. I began keeping a diary at age 12, and I still have that plaid cloth-covered book with a little brass lock. I don’t know when my diaries grew up and became journals. Nor do I know what percentage of those books are dream journals. Some months and years I kept separate dream journals, others I just wrote the dreams alongside, beneath or above entries about daytime adventures. Lately I’ve been starting journals from both ends (is that like burning a candle from both ends?) I draw a moon on the front cover of the notebook and flip it over and make a sun on the “back” cover. So, moving from the front of the notebook, each morning I record my dreams. Before bed, I flip the book over and beginning from the “back” I date the page and write a bit about the day. When day meets night we call it dusk. But when day meets night in my journals, I call it: “Time to go buy a new notebook.”

An assortment of dream journals ...

I peek inside a "day" journal, in which I muse on the importance of dream journals ...


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