My first thought was, “Shit,” followed by my second thought, “Shit!”
Going backwards, I struggled to grab anything nearby, a futile effort because nothing was nearby. As I went backwards, I was turning my head, taking in my environment, and processing information. This led me to a realization that I was falling backwards.
The sky was dark. It wasn’t night darkness, but stormy darkness. My dream mind split between addressing what was happening now and worries about surviving, to a more intellectual approach that wanted to understand how I’d come to be falling backwards and where I was falling from.
The where part seemed visible as a dark gray castle on a high mountain crag. Some trick of light played with it because I also saw it as a rain-whipped white concrete building with tall, dark windows. The image duality confused me, but they reminded me of ivory tower and Gothic horror. The background for both were thick, charcoal clouds that promised prolonged and violent storming. I seemed to think or recall, my dream self didn’t know which, I’d been climbing, it’d been wet, and I’d slipped. When I did, I lost my grip and the wind blew me off the mountain.
Meanwhile, I was falling straight backward, going down. Knowing that behind (below) me was a steep, treacherous ravine filled with fir trees and boulders, I didn’t relish landing, because it was sure to be painful.
Then, I wasn’t falling down. I seemed to be hanging in the air on my back. I looked left and right, enjoying that. As I did, the wind picked me up and righted me, an action that spread a grin across my face. “Thank you,” I thought to whoever or whatever did that for me.
The weather had delivered on the promised deluge. Winds roared around me as lightning ripped the sky and lightning boomed in best Wagnerian manner. But I was cool with it, calm, but wet, and weirdly, grinning and happy. The dream ended.
I still grin as I remember it, because I looked so happy.
After awakening and cruising through morning routines while drinking coffee and mulling the dream, I thought, this represents the past and traditional ways of doing things (the dark castle), and the intellectual writing process (the ivory tower), and my usual fears of failing (falling), with efforts to reassure me not to worry (floating and then flying).