Muse and Me
Early May 2021
I do my best work before I wake up in the morning. My dreams are sources of creative splendour. And, as my character Shannon Caine, says in NORTHSTAR:
I’m a Freudian delight.
Last night I experienced a series of revelatory and often comical dreams, perhaps to match my every-day responses to having a series of rooms in my house for my Muse to Use.
Possessing rooms of your own in which to work, to play, to eat, to relax, to read, to dream — it makes a difference. I have waited more than 25 years, even a lifetime, to be in charge of these creative spaces, or places, to call my own.
It was not easy, the waiting, but it was rewarding. Letting my offspring have rooms of their own, for as long as they needed them (!!), permitted me the joy of being a mother, and the joy of being an artist — the joys of being me.
And while I have decided to keep the deeper meanings of those free-flow dreams to myself, I can disclose details of a couple of reverie doozies.
One memorable image was of a perfectly disgusted colonel — announcing behind a podium, to the American tax-paying public — that the U.S. Army had changed the color of the combat, or field, uniform from army-green to puce. The colonel looked about to puke.
My sleeping mind then engaged in several colorful montages of mnemonic imagination — complete with lush sound effects and dialogue — during that blissful interlude between night and day — known as sleep.
That military announcement to the U.S. citizenry was followed by a split-screen in my REM psyche. The huge split-screen showed several paid propagandists of what used to be called The Media. On the left side of the screen, those slavishly submissive reporters and reporterettes palavered the Approved Question-Points, or even the Single Singularly Stupid Circular Question.
On the right side of the screen, this pitiful person wore the Impersonator Costume of the theatrical character that he or she most craved to portray on-stage. She was thereby proving, to one and all of one — watching amidst the blinding floodlights — that this naufrage of mimicry had, at last, made it to the Big White Way, and was not sinking in the shrinking cesspool swamp.
The post-millennial penny dreadful was Sweeney Todd in Digital Tinseltown — laughing all the way to the next parade of not-horribles in my brain!
As I recall, the last portion of this nocturnal hilarity involved my asking Dear Hubby: “Have I done enough during the past ten years?”
He assured me that I have. My Muse assures me that I have. I assure my Muse that I have. All I need to do is to convince me, Debra, that I have — and to keep sleeping — and dreaming — without interruption.
I thus have taken the bold step to realize the exhilarating re-alignment in the relationship of the forces of inspiration in my creative life, and in my house, Larkhaven:
My Muse and Me — that pairing makes for much more harmony than did “Me and My Muse”.
Oh, I shall never forget the push-pull of our inventive chemistry. Or my comical unwillingness to instantly submit to her demands, as well as my ecstasy in ingeniously going all the way to the goals of wherever she led me.
I have grown, and matured, and have, finally, attained the (initial) summit of womanly creativity. The climb to this aesthetic Mt. Everest has taken decades, I’ll admit, but I’m kinda thinking I’ve conquered it. I have reached the State of Zen: I am the Guardian of my Muse.
I now protect her from undue endeavours that are not worthy of her. Whenever a bit of judicious pruning of the productivity is in order, I handle the job with rapier decisiveness, not with a pruning shear, but a cutlass that truly cuts.
It’s the least that I can do for my Muse, to return the favor of artistically acting in her best interests. She’s always performed protectively to safeguard me in the interests of my imagination, maybe even the interests of my nation. She cannot live without me, although I have, at times, faced the world without awareness of her, which is almost the same thing as having lived without her.
I’ve learned that the strong silent type is not only what My Muse loves — it is who she really is!