Roswila's Dream & Poetry Realm

SEE ALSO: TRYING TO HOLD A BOX OF LIGHT (photos, realistic to abstract)

Saturday, October 22, 2011


This September’s 30 days of daily posts below is the last month of daily, posts. Starting mid-October I switched to a weekly post for the foreseeable future, in order to free up some morning time for other projects (creative and practical) that have been gathering dust. So there’ll be only four posts in total for any given month after this. A lot less to wade through.

I’m enjoying the “extra” time, but also missing making a daily post. I’ve done one for many years. However, I’ve not stopped writing dreamku on getting up; that process is my morning meditation. This switch to a weekly post damped my dream recall a wee bit the first week but it seems to be picking up again. And the choice of which of several dreamku/series to post at the end of a week is an interesting process. The first week (mid-October) I “cheated” and posted two. (NOTE ADDED VERY SOON AFTER: Posts are now being made and retained daily, with a very occasional skipped day. Once a week was just not enough to cover the amount of writing I do about dreams.)

“All human beings are also dream beings. Dreaming ties all [hu]mankind together.”– Jack Kerouac


[PLEASE NOTE that in most browsers you can click on the image for a larger version.]

September 1, 2011


this time she doesn’t
have to lash herself to the mast
of the here and now
the past’s once siren call
just falls vaguely around her ...

flickering faintly
like an old silent movie
the only show
in some tumbledown town
in an echoing dusty hall

[two tanka on a dream of 8-31-11. Image “Seasonal Music” by Roswila]

September 2, 2011


two men will move out
once the party’s over;
their small dog pulls one
to the edge of the suburb curb
greeting guests and anxious to leave

no time to express
how I’ll miss these two men
I have to complete
party preparations despite
the growing presence of sadness

sunny afternoon the Tree of Heaven bows

[two tanka and a monoku on a dream of 9-1-11. Image “The Edge” by Roswila]

September 3, 2011

go on now, Time says,
the next ten minutes are lucky
enjoy this heads up

[dreamku on a dream fragment of 9-2-11. Image “Make Me An Offer” by Roswila]

August 4, 2011


night forces a halt
we set up camp by the light
of red draperies –
the dark from which these curtains
reweave tightens by inches

[tanka on a dream of 9-3-11. Image “At the Edge of Night” by Roswila]

September 5, 2011


first day on the job
the new young guy out-performs
every one of us
with no training or even
orientation he excels

unlike another
new young gal working the phones
whom the boss doesn’t like:
she speaks too loud, he says,
when she even speaks at all

why tell me, I think,
give her a clue of what she needs
to know to do her job
stars like that new young man are rare
and burn out all too quickly

[three tanka on a dream of 9-4-11. Image “Sunburn” by Roswila]

September 6, 2011


the dog attacks her
its cavernous mouth nearly
chewing her up whole
she beats back this dark ambush
as she does the next, and the next

why did no one see
this war in front of their eyes
she checks her body
for wounds then gives in to the
pressure for explanation

her mouth spills words her eyes watch for the dog’s return

[two tanka and a monoku on a dream of 9-5-11. Image “Bird of Prey” by Roswila]

September 7, 2011


one after another
photos flicker like birthday candles
party time, or warning?

[dreamku on a dream of 9-6-11. The syllable count is over in all three lines of this dreamku. As I've mentioned here before, this is something I'm doing on occasion rather than twist the dream image out of shape or artificially expand it into a five line tanka. Image “Me First!” by Roswila]

September 8, 2011


in a garden labyrinth
hanging and re-hanging pictures
adjusting angles
a thought of “why bother” dispersed
by living silver moonlight

[a tanka on a dream of 9-7-11. Image “Night Vision” by Roswila]

September 9, 2011


news of a girl’s murder
then of a dark fantasy book
the only events
that pull the focus from the self,
from its ancient needy grip

[a tanka on a dream of 9-8-11. Image “The Midas Touch” by Roswila]

September 10, 2011

all dream memories
crumbled by noisy street life
wide open window
each waking in the warm night
trailing the dust of shy ghosts

[a tanka on the total lack of dream recall for the evening of 9-9-11. Image “Primary Collapse” by Roswila]

September 11, 2011

I’m departing from my usual dream poem post in order to acknowledge the tenth year observance today of the felling of New York city’s Twin Towers on September 11, 2001. I was a life-long resident of New York city before moving here to California in 2008. So at the time of the disaster I was living and working in NYC. The poem below is about an experience I had one week after the towers were felled, on my way to work.


the toddler cries "I want Mommy, I want Mommy…"

her parents squeeze into the crowded subway car,
Daddy holding the screeching child,
who strains toward her mother

her father hands her to Mommy,
a generous man giving them a seat
the child's father struggles further into the full car
out of the way of more passengers entering

the toddler starts sobbing "I want Daddy, I want Daddy…"

I choke back tears of my own as I think
of all the children now missing parents,
who cannot cry out and have them return

is this inconsolable child feeling all our fear and loss
in which she is awash, and crying all our tears

the sobbing toddler grasps between the legs
of passengers trying to reach her father

"God will lift Daddy up to heaven,"
a grieving mother said, her child responding
"Does God have enough hands?"

Does God have enough hands to help us
bear our grief, to help us live compassionately,
to help us heal that gaping hole in the human spirit
that opens wherever ignorance and hate prevail?

the child's father finally wends his way
toward his crying child and takes her frantically
waving hand, "Pleased to meet you,"
he tentatively jokes

she starts to sob "I want my grandma…"
this small child, reflecting the grief
of our stricken city, this looming grief
of the ages

*published in the award winning Anthology “An Eye for An Eye Makes the Whole World Blind: Poets on 9/11,” Regent Press, 2002.

Patricia Kelly © 2011

September 12, 2011

dreams tease gliding by
like those transparent floaters
in one’s vision,
dangling repeating shapes but
devoid of any content

[a tanka on an evening of forgotten dreams 9-11-11. Image "Water Wight" by Roswila]

September 13, 2011


Willie Nelson’s bras
sparkle with sequined feathers
washing would wreck them
I remove this bright plumage
for interim safekeeping

[a tanka on a dream of 9-12-11. Image “Psst, I’ve Got Your Back” by Roswila]

September 14, 2011


she will not say who
her son’s father is, nor how
she found men she’d extort
but she’s got a good job now
and is determined to go straight

the shadowy times of
blaming fatherhood on rich man
after rich man, past
they can keep their filthy lucre
she’ll live clean and clear in the sun

[two tanka on a dream of 9-13-11. Image “Artemis at Her Bath” by Roswila]

September 15, 2011


what’s the difference
between the “V” of the Peace Sign
and that of Victory?
this inquiry gets lost beneath the
issue of angle:

place your two fingered “V”
against that of the Machine’s
a match means you’re right

[a tanka and a dreamku on a dream of 9-12-11. Image “The Growing Edge” by Roswila]

September 16, 2011


“supply and demand”
what a crock! especially
when applied to food

what happens if food
demand leads to famine
where do prices go then?

it all depends on
emotion, not some so-called law
they can call it “lack
of consumer confidence” but
it’s still fear of empty bellies

[two dreamku and a tanka on a dream of 9-15-11. Image “Hue and Cry” by Roswila]

September 17, 2011

stopped in my tracks:
down the subway stairs
a deep moonlit forest

[No dream recall for evening of 9-16-11, so I’m re-posting this old one from April of 2008, dreamed/written two months after I moved here to California. Image “The World Tree” by Roswila]

September 18, 2011


the delicate tree
with its small spear shaped leaves grows
throughout her body
it will blush forever red
keeping her lie to itself

[a tanka on a dream of 9-17-11. Image “Firefall” by Roswila]

September 19, 2011

[No dream recall from last night, or rather what I had was chased away by waking to my cell phone alarm. Image "Nap Time" by Roswila]

September 20, 2011


ancient sandstone cliffs
snapping photo after photo
“Hallelujah ... Hallelujah...”
the song echos off layers
of luminous curves

[a tanka on a dream of 9-19.11. The song I heard was Leonard Cohen’s "Hallelujah." Though all that was being sung was the repeated hallelujah, often the high harmony line. And that's something I find odd in my dreams. Not only do I often remember/sing (or so it seems) melodies I can't recall when awake, but I often sing the harmony lines. The latter is something I find quite challenging to do when awake, even when I know the tune extremely well. Image “Petroglyph” by Roswila]

September 21, 2011

it’s our nightly job
to patrol the grand old theatre
his aging mind nearly
as empty as the carpeted
aisles and vast vaulted stage

I don’t begrudge him this
end of life job, though I wind up
patrolling alone
the peaceful void draped
with unexamined shadows

why disturb what lurks there’s nothing left to guard

[two tanka and a monoku on a dream of 9-20-11. Image “Out of the Shadows” by Roswila]

NO POST September 22, 2011 [Con Ed scheduled power outages]

September 23, 2011


outside her window
a gnarled old tree casts shadows
would that it could talk

on one of her walls
a huge painted frame drum rests
in afternoon light
its black and white abstract stripes
don’t fit the feel of the scene

but the drum’s thrumming!
a heart needs no designs
no artful crafting
just an authentic beat
moving life through the great round

[a dreamku and two tanka on a dream of 9-22-11. No post yesterday (9-22-11). Power outages had been scheduled by Con Ed for between 8:00 and 5:00, so I just didn’t turn my computer on until late evening. Image “Hidden Heart” by Roswila]

September 24, 2011

an aquarium!
this new computer back up
file system really rocks

simple and quite fast
the lamp light refracts through
its watery blues
while over its bottom data rolls
sparkling vaguely like dunes

[a dreamku and tanka on a dream of 9-23-11. LOL! This dream seems to be a metaphor for what dreams do (at least at a primary level) -- "lay down" experience in longer term memory. Image “Layering” by Roswila]

September 25, 2011


the new hotel’s built
at least ten floors underground
the halls re-painted
many times for water stains
and replastered for large cracks

I can’t stop thinking
of pressure from floors above
I won’t stay here again

[a tanka and dreamku on a dream of 9-24-11. Image “The Long Haul” by Roswila]

September 26, 2011


liking and respect
aside, I’ve been there, done that ...
he keeps recruiting

adding vitamins
to vegetarianism
and openness to
social action didn’t help then
and doesn’t change a thing now

[a dreamku and tanka on a dream of 9-25-11. Image “Mars Landing” by Roswila]

September 27, 2011


the center of our
earth is warm and brightly lit
we post new haiku
on ancestor trees and boulders
sand shifting beneath our bare feet

each time this dream light
dies out in the chilly night
I turn over quickly
and glide gladly back to sleep
the earth’s center opening warmly

[two tanka on a dream of 9-26-11. Image “Leaf Blot” by Roswila]

September 28 ,2011


the queue grows, couple
by couple, some strangers
some long-time lovers,
each anxious to offer up
their lip-lock toward world peace

the moonlight the carnival mood my aloneness

[a tanka and a monoku on a dream of 9-28-11. Image “In the Night” by Roswila]

September 29, 2011

For all my Jewish friends and readers:
May Your ROSH HASHANNAH Be Blessed
(New Year 5772)

* * * * * * * *


“the power of space
made sacred by communal
dance rehearsals
and especially of
a doorway threshold...”

who is there pauses
anymore to softly sense
and respect edges –
door sills trod without a care
dangerously stir hidden power

[two tanka on a dream of 9-28-11. The first tanka is almost a verbatim quote from the dream. The speaker was a dark-haired unknown man as we stood outside the door to a dance studio. Cardea is the Roman Goddess of doors, and therefore of protecting home and children from evil. Although Cardea was not directly referenced in the dream, She was my immediate association on waking in the middle of the night. Image "Galactic Dance" by Roswila]

September 30, 2011


she never shuts up
yet I can’t catch sight of her
in our woman’s group
then, there, askew on the couch
her endlessly talking head!

* * * *

the students announce
a new campus wide ruling:
headless folk who wear
electronic prostheses
may join the student body

[two tanka on two separate dreams of 9-28-11. These dreams weren’t funny on dreaming them, but neither were they very serious. Just sort of matter of fact. But, a couch potato head? And that pun on “body” in the second dream? I think I watched way too much T.V. that evening before going to bed. Image "The Great Round" by Roswila]

* * * *

‘til next time, keep dreaming,

[aka: Patricia Kelly]

**** If you wish to copy or use any of my writing or poems, please email me for permission (under “View my complete profile”)****My other blogs: ROSWILA’S TAROT GALLERY & JOURNAL and ROSWILA’S TAIGA TAROT, OPENING TO THE LIGHT (digital photos by Roswila);and Yahoo DREAMJIN: Group for Dreamku – Haiku-Like Dream Poems ****

Sunday, October 16, 2011


(Photo: "Music at Sunset" by Roswila)

(two separate dreamku series on dreams from two different nights)


“What’s been deleted”
she asks crankily
“from this lengthy list,
I need to see what’s not going
to ever appear again.”

revealed in response,
an emerging phoenix –
she comprehends, then
finds seeing other deletions
no longer so desirable

it’s enough to know:
this one repeated burning hurt
will not be born again

[two tanka and a dreamku on a dream of 10-13-11]

* * * * * * * *


echoing up three
flights of stairs under sunset
bamboo flute music

I yearn to join their
impromptu gathering
playing softly along
but I dare not attempt to
navigate the steep stairs

listening will suffice
night and notes fall lightly
wistful fairy dust

[a dreamku, tanka, and dreamku on a dream of 10-12-11]

PLEASE NOTE that in most browsers you can click on the above image for a larger version. Also, that the photo accompanying a daily dream poem is not necessarily meant to illustrate it, but to reflect some small, even slant aspect of the dream verse -- similar to Japanese haiga (illustrated haiku). I've also recently realized that although the dreamku posted here tend not to have metaphor or simile, the accompanying photos almost always act as such. And to write a metaphor or simile into a dream scenario is something I rarely do. It can be confusing: did it really look like a hand, say, in the dream, or am I just being poetic to make my conscious point? As these dreamku act as a dream journal, my over-riding tendency is to try to stay close to the actual dream scenario itself. Admittedly making for less "poetic" dreamku. Then why pay attention to any haiku, tanka, or monoku parameters at all? Because I find in even attempting to adhere to them I'm making choices that relieve my dream recall of a great deal of chatter so that I can get down to some important dream aspects. Here's a link to THE AREN'TS OF DREAMKU & ACCOMPANYING PHOTOS in which I go into some of the basic parameters for dreamku and the photos chosen to go with them.

If you comment about a specific dreamku, tanka, monoku, series or photo please identify it somehow in your comment or email, as this post changes weekly and I sometimes can't tell what is being referred to. Thanks!

The archives in the sidebar hold years of the daily dreamku, tanka, monoku and photo posts I've made, grouped in one post by month. The weekly posts I'm now making appear below and then in the archives by the day on which they were posted.

There are many other sorts of posts here, not all dream-based. I indicate which are about or influenced by dreams. Some non-dream focused posts are book reviews, "regular" poems (some by other writers than myself), scifaiku, writing exercises, Tarot haiku, photos, haiga, and so on. However, most of those are in much older posts. There's a listing by month going back to early 2006, at the end of the sidebar.

Click here for a more in-depth INTRODUCTION.

* * * *

‘til next time, keep dreaming,

[aka: Patricia Kelly]

**** If you wish to copy or use any of my writing or poems, please email me for permission (under “View my complete profile”) **** My other blogs: ROSWILA’S TAROT GALLERY & JOURNAL; ROSWILA’S TAIGA TAROT; and OPENING TO THE LIGHT ****