Hercules

I was watching a movie on television except I was inside of it – not participating in it but just within it.  I saw a man – a warrior – wearing odd, intricate armor with a detailed headpiece like something out of a fantasy novel.  He was walking along a most peculiar sort of bridge – a long, slender thing that turned and twisted across the dark surroundings much like a pathway.  This odd bridge was made out of a kind of reddish-brown rock and dirt that matched the twisted mountains in the background.  However, the most unique aspect of this bridge were the arches that curved over it – built of the same rock material.  The setting was such that this intriguing bridge looked not a touch out of place – it fit in perfectly with the dark tones of the sky and the deep red hues of lava that flowed beneath it, covering the entire land.  I got a close-up view of the warrior and saw that he was upon a horse – a white one with an elaborate bridle.  Suddenly, the man lifted his face to the skies, alerted of a possible threat of danger, and his headpiece moved mechanically over the sides of his face as he prepared for a potential combat.

The next thing I remember, he was standing at the foot of a waterfall.  The sky was clear and a leafy, green forest showed itself at the edge of the blue waters.  He was standing within these waters, up to his waist, his helmet off and his long, dark hair hanging in damp, wild strands around a toughened face.  His features were not particularly good-looking […].  He did not seem like the warm, genuine character he is often portrayed as – but instead, like a man hardened by his life, void of any ability to express warmth and affection.  His heart was full of vengeance […], for his younger brother had been murdered.  In front of him, his sister appeared – a beautiful woman in red, flowing garments, also standing in the waters at the base of the falls.  I remember she had long, red hair intertwined with silken ribbons.  She tried to persuade him not to seek vengeance for, I think, the perpetrators were also family.  But the man (Hercules, I now realized) showed no signs of complying.

Suddenly, I saw a giant orca leap from the waters, ascending into the air.  Then I was inside of a cave looking out.  There were two men inside – the perpetrators who were scrambling about as the orca appeared at the mouth of the cave followed immediately by a wall of water which blocked the cave’s entrance, trapping the two men within.  The water did not spill itself into the cave but simply remained where it was, as if behind great glass panes.  I watched as the orca swam away – a dark silhouette within a deep ocean.

The rest of the dream involved the two brothers trying to escape from their prison […].  At one point, I think I became one of the brothers – or perhaps, briefly, I remember once thinking myself Hercules.  Trying to find my escape, I recall climbing out of the cave, along its steep sides.  I think I was looking for a way to rescue my brother who was still waiting for me inside – for the plan was for me to return.  I remember clinging to the slippery, moss-covered rocks, making my way around until I was almost to the cave’s mouth, when I came upon shelves of books which I felt compelled to rescue.  I tried carrying them by the armloads but they fell to the ground and I was only able to salvage one – Le Petit[] Prince.  I dashed back to the cave and slid it onto a shelf but I saw that I already had a copy of it.  I might’ve taken it out again – I don’t remember – but I think I tried convincing my brother to help me rescue the books.  As we were attempting to do so, the cave began to collapse. We were clinging to the outside of it, trying to salvage the last of the books – only the cave no longer appeared to be a cave, but instead, appeared more like an ancient Greek structure with white pillars – much smaller, though, almost diminutive in comparison to the actual buildings.  This structure started to cave in, the pillars crumbling and the roof threatening to fall in.  With all my strength, I held it up – just a second longer, so the books could be evacuated.  I was Hercules, I could do it, I thought.

I don’t remember whether or not my brother and I succeeded, for that is all I could recall of the dream.

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Beethoven

I think it was the early eighteen hundreds because of the way the townspeople were dressed.  I was in one of those large dresses typical of that time – nothing fancy or elaborate but not too dull at the same time.  It looked like some sort of simple festival was going on at the town square – for a bunch of men and some women were all clustered together in the midst of some active game, all running across the cobbled streets with laughs and cries of exhilaration.  I was among the spectators who crowded around the players, clapping my hands and [craning] my neck to catch a glimpse of what was going on.  For a moment, I took a brief pause in my excitement and stepped back to the fringes of the crowd where I deliberately made the decision to stand next to a German man whom I knew to be Ludwig van Beethoven.  I didn’t look at him or pay special attention to him – just kept my neck [craned], my eyes focused ahead, and my hands clapping.  He looked at me calmly, at how excited and happy I was, and then he said, “Would you like to come to dinner with me?”  I was astounded, aghast – and altogether thrilled as I accepted his invitation.

[…]

I remember being in a store with him once – it looked strikingly modern, like a [JCPenney] or the makeup section at Macy’s.  There were whitewashed walls and long counters with mirrors and jewelry.  Beethoven and I were laughing and joking as I led him up to one of the counters and I looked at myself in a small mirror propped up on the countertop.  It was one of those typical mirrors that department stores usually have on their make-up countertops – with those fake gold-metal linings.  The reflection that I saw was a young girl in her late teens who was as cute as anything.  She resembled me in a way, only much lovelier, and with a face that was all smiles.  No wonder Beethoven loves me, I thought.  I’m prettier than anything.  My dark hair was done in elaborate braids – pulled back in two fishbones, I think, that ran across the sides of my head.  It was hard to tell exactly what hairstyle I had from the reflection.

Beethoven […] reached forward and picked up a set of beautiful earrings – one in each hand.  They were small hoop earrings, studded with rows and rows of tiny diamonds – they were absolutely gorgeous.  He held them up next to my face, right underneath my ears – and they made me look even more lovely.  “Oh, they’re wonderful!” I exclaimed.  “They’re so beautiful!”  And so he bought them for me.

The next thing I remember, we were in a bookstore together – a modest one with wooden walls and a single storekeeper behind a small, wooden counter – early nineteenth century again.  I think [Beethoven] was looking out a window, all sullen and worried, and I was coming to the realization that he was deaf.  I noticed that he never responded to anything I said unless he could see and read my lips. […]

Napoleon was invading and we were grim as we stood in the bookstore.  Beethoven wanted to save the books from being burned and so […] we pulled the books from the shelves in a frenzy, loading as many as we could into a cloth bag that I carried.  I asked him some urgent question that I can’t quite remember – something like, “But what if they don’t know…?”  I was referring to Napoleon’s troops.  However, Beethoven couldn’t hear me.  I touched him on the shoulder so that he turned and looked at me while I repeated my question.  But the time was too chaotic and I said it too fast – he did not understand me – was unable to read what I had to say.  He embraced me anyways and told me what to do with the books.  Then he left ahead of me, walking out the front door.  I remember thinking about how misunderstood the man was.  And I remember seeing a glimpse of myself running after him in my big long dress – down a dirt road in the middle of town.  As I ran, I thought, Who would’ve known that from dinner would come this? […]  And I was so glad he had asked me to dinner.

Then I was back at the bookstore, walking out the front door and leaving the books next to the front steps in a bag that was now plastic.  It was what Beethoven had told me to do.  I looked out at the town and saw a great many people lying dead or dying upon the ground – civilians that Napoleon’s troops had slain.  To my left I saw a woman on the ground […].  To my right, Beethoven was making his way among these dead – hurrying towards a particular building.  I picked up my skirt and ran after him.  As I did so, I noticed that my skirt felt like plastic bags. […]

I followed Ludwig into the building, which was all fancy and lavishly adorned inside – like a nineteenth century palace.  There were a number of gentlemen in a particular room going about business – dressed in suits appropriate for the time.  As Ludwig entered, one of the gentlemen – rather round in face and feature – approached him and greeted him with, “How’s that ringing in your ears, Sir?”  Apparently, they either did not know of Ludwig’s condition or were making fun of him for it.

Ludwig ignored the man and proceeded to the desk of another gentleman who was taller, more well-built, and more business-like than the previous gentleman.  This man had a dark mustache and wore over one eye a spectacle attached to a cord.  Beethoven threw what looked like a manuscript in front of the man upon his desk.  The two argued about the books Beethoven had been trying to save.  There was some elaborate scheme, but ultimately, the gentleman wound up taking the credit for rescuing the books.

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