A writing teacher long ago told me, “Don’t write about your dreams.” Because dreams are boring? Abject? Inconsequential? Uncommunicative? The persona non grata of literature? Sidestepping the advice, I’ve written about dreams, nonstop, ever since.
Please bring to class some notes on dreams you’ve had. Or just bring your memories of these dreams, or your willingness to hear other people’s dreams. Also bring a bag (or any variety of container) filled with things you want to talk about, write about, think about, show to other people. Anything can go in the bag. Precious things, negligible things. Things that barely qualify as things—a phrase scrawled on a scrap of paper. In our time together we will talk about our dreams and talk about the contents of our bags, and we will do many short writing experiments (poetry or prose, it makes no difference) based on our bags and our dreams and maybe also on other people’s bags and other people’s dreams. Perhaps, if we have the gumption, we might improvise a talk opera. And we might diverge from dream altogether, to watch the sharp outlines around “dream,” as a concept, disappear.