Last night I dreamt about apostrophes. I was writing sentences without apostrophes, so that my students could rewrite them with apostrophes and… well, that’s about it, really.
I guess this dream means I’ve either got serious problems (possibly a punctuation-based meltdown in the near future?), or no problems at all whatsoever. My subconscious mind is apparently free of the usual nagging worries about the overwhelming futility of human existence and the urge towards evil that lurks inside all human hearts. For obvious reasons, this disturbs me.
So, as always in times of doubt, I turned to a dictionary. There are several dream dictionaries online, but they are rubbish compared to the brilliant ‘Your Dreams and What They Mean’ by Nerys Lee. I found this gem in a charity shop somewhere, many years ago, and I’ve kept it with me ever since. Not only does it have a gorgeously suggestive cover illustration (The Dream, by Henri Rousseau), but inside it has all sorts of information that I have never read anywhere else, from a brief description of the history of dreaming, to advice on how to deal with a psychic or incubus attack whilst asleep.*
Amazingly, there is no entry for ‘apostrophe’, ‘comma’, or for ‘punctuation’ in general. However, I did find out that a rhinoceros is traditionally a sex symbol, a whale is symbolic of the feminine self (“the womb of mother nature”), and that a jay is a messenger from the dead.
Perhaps you already knew.
Well. Even apostrophe dreams are quite interesting when looked at from a certain angle. Indeed, I get many of my best ideas from dreams, and from dream books. I already wrote a story called ‘Your dreams and what they mean’ (It is here) and now I’m scouring this fantastic book again to see if inspiration strikes. I am somewhat tempted to write an epic poem about a rhinoceros and a whale. Watch this space.
*In this section of the book, I just found a small yellow moth, dried and pressed into the pages.