“I dreamed last night I came to a clearing in a forest and at the center of the clearing was an exposed glass well, something like a test tube or elongated beaker. In the well was water, such clear, sparkling and luminous water. In my hands I had a vial of another liquid; in the dream I understood it to be a concentrated toxic material, everything that had drained from my time in spaces that did not center love, contact with the natural world, laughter, or on-going connection with others. I knew that when I poured it in, the toxic liquid would, immediately, or in a few moments, be completely purified. Is this what I want from writing? I have been walking with the dream all day, trying to understand or interpret the imagery. Have you ever taken an image, or a question, for a walk? A few minutes ago, I came inside after walking for an hour, and while the kettle is boiling for tea, I thought I’d try to describe for you what I glimpsed and almost know. I think the dream is about the coming weekend, about the part of my brain, my own survival system, that is trying to work out what “sacred” means in the context of our disciplinary field, “creative writing.” I think my dream was about The Grove, because that was what it was. I think my dream was a dream about a place where we can bring what we cannot carry in our own bodies anymore. We know that all we have to do is make our way there, with what it is that we want to pour out. As I write these words, something that did not happen in the dream, but which is happening now, I can see the radical others — human, animal, and from the other world — who are stepping now, out of the trees. It’s by writing that I discover something that the dream did not show: a community of witnesses, of all of the others carrying their own vials, their own inherited forms of time, walking, right now, or by other means, towards this place.”
Walk with us toward your sacred space.
Step out of the trees, put the kettle on for tea.
The Grove virtual writing retreat is this weekend, October 24th and 25th, 2020 and we are still taking registrations, so if you have been meaning to sign up, don’t forget!
This is how our teachers are preparing, and their recommendations to the writers who are coming to co-create the virtual, magical Grove:
THE TAROT ORACLE:
If you have a question (or more than one) about your project, process, writing life, etc. write it down. The cards are a conduit and you are the oracle. And though we won’t be asking questions about our individual projects or personal issues, the cards often answer those questions anyway. The more clearly you can articulate what you want to know for yourself, the better the chance of the answer coming. Also, we will have some time during the session for discussion where epiphanies come and magical connections are made.
This will be a time for you to be simply present—in mind, body, and soul. Ridding your virtual space of any distractions will be the most important part of our time together. Have with you the kind of notebook that makes you feel inspired—lined paper, blank paper, loose-leaf or bound. Have with you the type of writing instrument that makes you feel connected to your words. Elena will provide all the texts. She will provide all the prompts. Your job is simply to open yourself up to the unanticipated and the astonishing.
This will be a time to honor the divine lines that lead to the desire lines, that then lead to the lines on the page.
Please bring any unfinished work or fragments of works that have not found their place, or form. It might help to print this work, or you are welcome, also, to have a digital folder you can connect to during our experience.
Have paper on hand, and writing/drawing implements. Also, a bowl of water.
Before the workshop, go for a walk. Gather any tree/leaf/branch matter you come upon, if it’s on the ground, or if the tree gives permission, and bring this tree material to our workshop, for a short ritual before: we start. If walking outside on the day of our workshop is not available to you, then bring, instead, what might substitute for: tree/leaf/branch.
THE FRUITFUL DREAMING SALON:
The Fruitful Dreaming Salon primarily requires your presence, and your dreams of good things. “Dreams” can be actual sleep dreams, day dreams, or wishes. “Good things” can mean your dream contains a positive or hopeful image, a good feeling, or even a scary image that needs changing. It might help to keep a journal of your dreams for a few days prior. On waking, write them down and bring something to our salon. Or, if you have been carrying a dream around for some time, please bring it to the table. Come prepared to share.
This is about dreaming together, so even if you think you haven’t got a dream to share, please join us. Your ideas, and your hidden dream brilliance will help us all shine.
This is dream time. What bring what you need to relax and chat. (Sherri recommends a cup of tea and a light snack!)
May your dreams be fruitful!