Blood is Slicker than Water

The only people with whom I was familiar—from my dream last night—are all dead. My late sister, my late brother, and my mother and father. The dream—the setting, its strange circumstances, and the obvious (to me) messages it contained—confirmed for me that dreams do have meaning. Their meanings may involve difficult-to-unravel labyrinthine complexities, but their significance is nonetheless so utterly obvious that missing them must be intentional. Even the most bizarre such dream situations contain messages that are impossible to overlook in the absence of a real, concerted effort to lock them. Their content is so clear that, even hidden behind a cloudy veil of sleep and confusion, they cannot be dismissed as the random firing of neural impulses. But, then, I suppose it is possible that the obviousness of a dream’s meaning is entirely accidental. Meaning is, after all, the assumed assignment of interpretation. The assumption that an interpretation was assigned might be misguided. Yet the clarity of the assumption, sometimes, is so crystal clear and precise that believing meaning to be accidental or random is beyond reason. The precision of the outcomes of evolution is one such clearly non-accidental circumstance. Yet evidence aggressively asserts otherwise. All arguments are guided by perspectives that may or may not be valid. Whether they are, or not, any or all conclusions reached from those arguments may be completely nonsensical, implausible, and wasteful of mental energy. I try to derail my thoughts about the meaning of my dream with logic and philosophy, but those efforts fail. Yet I keep trying, in the hope that I will succeed in deflecting ideas from lodging in my brain. And what’s the point in that?


Either I forgot or I blocked the thought; I have an early appointment with my cardiologist’s nurse this morning. I had wished for a nearly healthcare-free week—with just one appointment to see my oncologist—but that apparently was too much to hope for. Looking in the mirror is not enough to remind me of my deterioration. The calendar, too, reminds me that I continue aging at what now seems like an accelerating rate. Do we look ‘in” the mirror or do we look “at” it? If we look “in” it, what do we see? Does the reflection reveal who is behind the glass when we peer “in” it?  When we look “at” it, is the image we see more superficial than the one we see when we look “in” it? I have reached the conclusion that the image I see “on” the mirror is more physically appealing than the one the mirror sees when it looks back at me. The mirror sees me as I am; I see the reverse image when I peer at the mirror. The flaws are doctored by the reflection, though they are not corrected. They simply hide behind reality, although what I call vitreous surgery is inadequate to conceal the grave surface flaws. And the blemishes and ideological deformities and defects underneath are clear, if one looks into the eyes—the watery depths where secrets taunt and tease.


Putting it off is pointless. I must ready myself for my visit to the cardiologist’s office. Or, I could just stay home. “Sorry, I forgot my cardiovascular system has no interest in being analyzed by you and your kind.” No, I have to do it. The medical-industrial complex might charge me for a non-visit. And we can’t have that now, can we?

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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