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31 January 2010 @ 10:16 am
Dream Log: The Winterthin Thing  
Last night was gaming night, and, as a result, I caffeinated for the first time in a week and a half. As a result, I didn't get to bed until after 01:30, and when sleep finally came, all manner of vivid and surreal dreams occurred (with recurring water symbolism, for the record).

The dream that left a real impression on me, however, happened between "Well, I guess I'm awake now" 07:15 and "Wait, how did it get to be" 08:30, a time more associated with hypnopompic states than REM sleep.

Like the dream of the Dolphin in the Library, I was watching this one unfold from a third-person vantage. The protagonist in this case was a female lion-like creature, not anthropomorphic in the humanoid sense, but definitely possessing language, culture, and some degree of tool use. She was pregnant, and not entirely "with it"; in retrospect, there was a hint that those caring for her had her drugged. They her kept giving her puzzles to solve, and treating her solutions as oracles for the fate of her unborn offspring.

The most distinctive feature was an entity that looked like a cave painting of something a gaunt coyote, visible only to the dream's protagonist -- and not entirely visible, at that. It seemed more a fleeting shadow of an entity that whispered in the protagonist's ear, giving different interpretations to those oracles, or dismissing them entirely. Despite its sinister appearance and bearing, there was a suggestion that it was actually more benign and well-disposed toward the protagonist than the tangible and superficially-benevolent people caring for her.

It called itself "Nine-Moons-Winter"; the dream's protagonist thought of it as "the Winterthin Thing". Either name was an obvious reference to its gaunt appearance: as gaunt as something that had survived a winter that lasted nine moons.

The Winterthin Thing was more visible than the "real", tangible creatures, as if I were observing the action from the Dreamtime -- which I was, I suppose. There was definitely some Ursula Vernon influence here, visuals of cave paintings twining around and interacting with vaguely-seen but definitely "real" creatures, vivid black charcoals over soft gray pencils; the captions were even in the same font ursulav uses for Digger.

(Yes, there were captions. The "format" of the dream was somewhere between a comic and a movie. And yes, I can often read very clearly in dreams, contrary to popular lore that says you can't.)

It was a very vivid dream, one that stayed with me on awakening and fairly well demanded that I record it here.

... did something just introduce itself?

 
 
I feel: contemplativecontemplative
I hear: The Rolling Stones - Sympathy for the Devil
 
 
 
silmaril on January 31st, 2010 07:11 pm (UTC)
... did something just introduce itself?

Possibly... If you retained that much, something that has been simmering undercover for a long time...
Your Obedient Serpent: fnordathelind on January 31st, 2010 11:40 pm (UTC)
Hm, the caffeine certainly contributed to the dream retention, too.

I retained a LOT of last night's dreams, including the Chevy Chase comedy remake of The Shining.
Hafochafoc on January 31st, 2010 08:39 pm (UTC)
If he is benevolent, I hope he has introduced himself to you. I don't invite things in-- you never know what it might be-- but surely I could use a good oracle. Or just somebody to give me a psychic kick in the pants. Because I seem to be stuck in Stay Here, It's Good Enough for now, and for the next two to five years. It is the sensible, logical, right thing to do... yet I have a haunting feeling I'm wrong, I'm missing something...

But I always do, and always have.
Hafochafoc on January 31st, 2010 08:40 pm (UTC)
What if what I'm missing is that it really is Good Enough? :)
Araquan Skytraceraraquan on January 31st, 2010 09:11 pm (UTC)
Such vivid imagery. I haven't had a dream like that in nearly ten years. When I did... Well, it was the gold guy in the icon saying hello. }:>
Paka: coyote photopaka on February 1st, 2010 01:36 am (UTC)
A skeleton with a grey wolf's skin stretched over it, a living allegory of want?

I'd be inclined to treat it as a manifestation of stuff you're working through - and try to do some art or writing about him. Subconscious processing or external entity, the result's the same, innit?
Your Obedient Serpent: big ideasathelind on February 1st, 2010 01:56 am (UTC)
A skeleton with a grey wolf's skin stretched over it, a living allegory of want?

The Winterthin Thing's thinness was more abstract than that, really. Not so much "gaunt" as "lean", now that I think of it. It certainly didn't seem ravenous or needy wanting. It seemed quite comfortable with its state, as though a threefold winter wasn't so much a hardship as Just The Way Things Are, not worthy of comment beyond its name.

An allegory, perhaps, of burning off the fat in one's life, a regimen of deliberate deprivation to get one into fighting trim?

... great, my dreams are haunted by an allegory of a diet.

Subconscious processing or external entity, the result's the same, innit?

Honestly, between Joseph Campbell, Julian Jaynes and Mage: The Ascension, I don't even acknowledge that there's a meaningful distinction.

Edited at 2010-02-01 04:21 am (UTC)
Brad E.kolchis on February 1st, 2010 07:18 am (UTC)
Neither would I.

I think it was an introduction. Given that I have a dear friend who is training to speak to the spirits, there is no reason you could not be, and no, there isn't necessarily a distinction.

Speaking of Mage, the protagonist reminds me very much of that wonderful alien you met on the Far Side of the Moon - the unfinished leonine alien who had shaped himself into a somewhat more humanoid form, had four arms and could reach around spacesuits (through the dimensions) to clasp your face in greeting. I wish I could remember his name; he was a neat character (or entity, since I'm not sure I made him up).

Great entry!
Pakapaka on February 1st, 2010 07:34 am (UTC)
It's actually a Mark Twain quote. It seemed like an okay description.
Your Obedient Serpent: facepalmathelind on February 1st, 2010 05:47 pm (UTC)
See Icon
Egad, I didn't recognize it!

It did get me thinking about just what Nine-Moons-Winter might mean, though, so thank you.