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The Tiger Wheel
Dreamed 2009/4/25 by Wayan; Dreamverse 44
for all you alliterative Vikings, of whatever species
Two subarctic tigers are adrift
on a cracked-off iceblue raft.
Patiently they pace their floe:
tigers have the stoic know-
how to fast long weeks, then feast.
The swiftest of their cold sea's
currents cup these cats: south-borne
wend they with the wind.
Heat-haze. A dusty tropic shore
500 yards away. Dim vast
savanna herds they see.
Are seen! Titanic leathery
hammerheaded reindeer howl
alarms: "Lion! Zebra? Lion!"
Never seen before, yet prey
apprehends a prowl.
Our tigers almost churn
and wade ashore, but they're
not quite starving yet, to dare
rough salt surf. Paws. Stare.
Too late now! Veldt-shore recedes.
Round the current wheels and leads
hungry weeks to taiga home. Full
circle! And what's a wheel?
A zero! Cat-caution made their long
transmarine loop cubless. These
catmates might have pioneered,
challenged lion veldt-kings, to sculpt
those hulking grazers swift and lean
with fang fear. But our tiger pair
left the foaming gap unswum!
Darwinian synapse, or Wallace's Line.
True, the quested couple now has fine
shivery travel tales to tell.
But they're a folk solitaire: it's hell
to lure a tigermoot to hear.
For herding cats is harder than
swimming a whitegap or catching an
unknown bighorned half-ton deer...
Then I woke. The wheel stops here.
- The tigers look but don't invade: today I saw Battle for Terra. In it a human general recklessly invades a peaceful alien world. And dies for it--taking lots of others with him. Is the film critiquing Bush's Iraq war? My dreams think so. As they point out, even if predation were moral, competent predators at least look before they leap.
- Swim the gap: I'm reading Libba Bray's A Great and Terrible Beauty. Her heroine Gemma grows up in India, sails to England--half a tiger-voyage! She may come full circle, in a way--she's attracted to an Indian guy. But she's Victorian; looks at men but slow to leap. So the dream may be less about Bush than Gemma--and shyness. After the movie today, I explored Japantown Mall--looked at manga, bought miso, and watched girls. But I was too shy to talk to anyone. Didn't swim the gap.
- Tigers stick to the floe: a pun, I bet. I've been solitary, doing art--taking refuge in my creative flow.
- Darwinian synapse: that is, such leaps are like the leap of nerve impulses across synapses; whether they jump the gap can have huge Darwinian consequences, not just for the species jumping into a new world, but for that world as well.
- Wallace's Line: the deepwater channel between Bali and Lombok in Indonesia. Wallace found land animals west of the line are quite Asian; east of it, Australian. Why? During the Ice Age, the western islands fused with mainland Asia, but the eastern isles stayed separate. A moat! Wallace concluded geography shapes biology, and developed a theory of evolution, which he sent to Darwin... forcing him to quit delaying and publish--make the leap!
- ACTION: I think the dream's warning me to fight my shyness, not to waste opportunities. When you see tiger heaven, leap.
- This is Dreamverse #44. The Dreamverse project is to write my best dream as a poem, weekly for a year.
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