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Dream Interpretation, Please!

My dream about Maria last night: She is beside me in bed, open and loving. I lean over and kiss her. “Now,” I say, “I’ve got to take care of the fish.” She smiles dreamily and nodds and says, "Va bene, caro..."

She knows fish is my euphemism for a large dolphin (or maybe it's a small whale), and my job up on the teak deck of the yacht is to gut it, dispose of the offal, and slice up the rich red meat. I set to work. To my surprise it's easy. I quickly pull out all the fatty white intestines, toss them off the starboard side, and then start with a big knife. When I'm through I hose down the deck. There, on a platter, is a nice pile of fillets.

Then the scene changes. Maria, my little sweetpea, stands at a tall vertical window overlooking a formal 17th Century English garden, and I come up behind her. She’s wearing a transparent shortie night gown. When I touch her she whimpers in sexual arousal. Yes, she loves me! Yes, indeed. I gently lift her nightie and kiss her tenderly on her lovely firm little tush.

I have a pretty clear idea what this represents. But I'm interested in what YOU think it means. Let me know!

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At a very simple level, it represents trying to move from Maria to Sweetpea. The dolphin looks like the "third body," the representation of the relationship twixt you and Maria, which has to be destroyed if you are going to be fully invested in Sweetpea. The violence of the dolphin's end suggests that it will be/has been excruiciating and difficult; it also suggests that on some level, you still can't leave Maria behind, that some part of you will always belong there in a way that is very real, not like the usual "Oh, I'll always love" platitude, but like some achy fire always kept banked.

However, if we look at it through the Gestalt school--my personal favorite--it changes considerably. For those who are not familiar, Gestalt interpretations start with the premise that everything in the dream is you. So it isn't Maria in the bed with you, it's a part of you that you need to deal with that is being represented by Maria. Ultimately, you are the best definer of these symbols, so what follows may not fit well, but I would suggest that there is some grain in this that you might want to look at.

I'd probably focus on the dolphin and Sweetpea.

Why is it a dolphin--a mammal, a species often inadvertently killed by fishermen seeking tuna? Why are you slaughtering the dolphin? What in you do you need to carve up? Are you crucifying yourself for letting Maria hurt you so? Are you killing yourself by forcing yourself to move on? Do you feel like you have been carved up and served, like a man cannibalized for someone else's needs?

Sweetpea: since she is yourself, are you recognizing that it is okay to love yourself despite your mistakes? She's standing in a historical garden: is she the love of and return to your youth? Is love making you feel young again? Since the nightie is transparent, are you worried that you can be seen through, or that you are looking at illusions?

Just some thoughts. :-)

A marvelous, thoughtful, and provocative analysis! Thank you for sending it my way. There's plenty to chew on here.

I've amended the text to make it clear that sweetpea is my pet name for Maria, and doesn't represent another woman. I don't know if that would alter the interpretation much, especially from the Gestalt point of view.

My own analysis of the dream is, in comparison to yours, narrow and literal. You've expanded my perceptions! Thanks again.

boy that is really interesting.this analysis!
i was also struck by the statement John made regarding "surprised how easy it was" when gutting the dolphin. As if it took you by surprise...

and i would think that *sweetpea* and Maria could be two facets of yourself..inside and outside...tense, relaxed...

makes me want to review two dreams i had recently....much to chew on with this Gestalt theory added to the mix.

thanks for posting John and thanks for responding so deeply emu. much enjoyed.

btw: nice to see you back j.
i too have been in a sort of retreat with other things going on.

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