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author’s note:

“We experience a dream as real because it is real.”
              — Dr. William C. Dement
 

MY BETTER WORLD

The excited uncertainty
of crossing a stone bridge in dark fog

ended
before I’d reached the end—ended
with the alarm of morning

and as I began my usual routine
the intensity faded
and I forgot the dream

until that afternoon:

while waiting to cross a city street
I suddenly recalled the night bridge
hidden and revealed and hidden
by the tease of shifting clouds

and as the feeling returned
my day world of blatant sunlight
became as real as that dream:

the traffic light warning me…
the bleached grey fence…
a vacant lot overgrown with weeds—
all seemed strangely alive

and I felt myself to be
an alien spirit
discovering a wonderland

then the light changed
and as my attention shifted
that sense of intensity faded:

once again I was
a lowly armadillo
grubbing along the asphalt.

However
that feeling of living
in a grander world
is not lost, only asleep

and sometimes
stirs from slumber
to end my daydream.

I then remember
I am more than a mere
creature of survival.
 

© 2018, Michael R. Patton
what I learned while alone: poetry ebook

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author’s note:

Reality…what a concept!
        — Robin Williams
 

MANY NEW DAWNS

I awoke to the morning sun
as if struck by lightning

then woke again—

shocked
as I realized
my first awakening
had been a dream.

I pinched myself then
to be certain of my reality

then woke again

but this time
to the actual physical world

though a philosopher might ask
can you be sure?

To that I’d reply:
maybe not—but
I’m pretty sure I know
what the dream says
which is:

enlightenment doesn’t happen
in one final lightning moment
but with many awakenings—
many new dawns.

And I say:
we are never done—
not even after
we’ve gone beyond.
 

© 2018, Michael R. Patton
myth steps: poetry ebook

author’s note:

I think I hold the world’s record for daydreaming.
 

LIVING IN A DREAM

In the dream
I bit into an apple

like the apple
I bit into
last Sunday
as I sat, daydreaming
beneath a droopy tree.

However
my dream apple
seemed much more intense
than my day apple—

maybe the dream came to wake me
with this message:

see what you miss
when you lazily ignore
just how incredible
your mundane life is.

I must not forget:
we live in a dream.

© 2018, Michael R. Patton
dream steps blog

author’s note:

Peace: always a work-in-progress.
 

WHAT I DISCOVERED AT THE SLEEP LAB

In our studies at the sleep lab
the quietest test subjects
often report
such loud dreams.

For instance:
the muted woman
who told us how she’d fought
to keep herself intact
as she spun up inside
a crazy gray tornado:

she described her struggle
with an elation absent later
when she awoke from seeing
a white dove perched
on her sunny window sill.

I wanted to say to her:
ironic, isn’t it?—you’re
more excited by the war
than by the peace you’ve earned.

But no, I did not—
we’re only allowed to make
some marks on a chart.

However
that evening I again sounded off
over drinks with my associates—
abandoning my science for the moment
to repeat with certainty this belief:

the dreams we record are proof
that all lives–
   even those so common
   even those so low
   even those so quiet
hold the highest goal.
 

© 2018, Michael R. Patton
searching for my best beliefs: poetry ebook

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