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This website is where John Wetherell uses poetry to explore dream images. There’s a lot wrong with how I use the Japanese verse forms of haiku and tanka — and a lot right with it as well. Wrong, because I so rarely remain true to the original Japanese spirit, with its images drawn from the natural world and its eternal present moment. Right, because sticking to the syllable verse forms of 5-7-5 or 5-7-5-7-7 works for me as therapy.

Ever since a brush with Jungian analysis 35 years ago, I’ve been wanting to know: what is the best home for a dream once you’re awake. Turning them into poems was an idea I began experimenting with in 1994 and have recently returned to. Here I share the daily results.

Science cannot really deal with dreams. The work of Freud and Jung wasn’t science — despite passionate conviction on the part of both men that it was. Magic on the other hand, is the future. Ridiculously tempting to try to justify that statement by defining ‘magic’. But it’s best left to stand on its own terms.

Below is an extract from the Foreword to Robert Graves’ Poems 1970-72. When I first came across this paragraph in 1982, it was a revelation, and has stayed with me ever since:

Now well into my seventy-sixth year, I [am] increasingly concerned with hidden powers of poetic thought, which raise and solve problems of advanced mathematics and physics. The word “poetry” meant in Greek the “act of making” — a sense that has survived in the old Scottish word for poet, namely “Maker”….The poetic power to make things happen, as understood for instance by the early mediaeval Irish master-poets, and by their Middle Eastern sufic contemporaries, raises simple love alliances to a point where physical absence supplies living presence. These experiences occur not only in the fourth dimension, where prison walls are easily cheated…..but in the fifth, where time proves as manipulable as is vertical or lateral space in the usual third dimension, and where seemingly impossible coincidences and so-called ‘Acts of God’ occur almost as a matter of course. In poetry, the fifth dimensional co-identification of lovers is truth rather than idealistic fancy….

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Hello! I find your blog and poems fascinating and believe you deserve more recognition, so I nominated you for a Liebster Award! Check it out here if you’d like http://hollandya.wordpress.com/2014/05/09/liebster/

    Reply

  2. Science cannot really deal with dreams. The work of Freud and Jung wasn’t science — despite passionate conviction on the part of both men that it was.

    You would have earned my ‘like’ with that para alone, but I really admire your approach too.

    Reply

    • I started following you after I read your comment on ‘La Gatita Oscura’ (‘about’ page). That’s a mean poem you dusted up off the cuff for her 🙂

      Reply

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