José Saramago tells a dream

“In the last few days I have repeatedly and obsessively been possessed by a dream which, I believe, is a variant of another one which I often had in the past. At that time, the dream was about me going through a number of printed pages, countless pages that I knew had been written by me, though I could not read them, despite the fact that they were clearly written in Portuguese.

The difference now is that the words are in a language that seems to be Portuguese – or rather, in my dream I am sure that the words are in Portuguese, all of them, but I find them deformed; I see that some letters are replaced by others, but, in this process, I cannot see which word was hidden inside what meets the eye. All this yields a strong sense of restlessness, a tantalizing feeling that comes close to anguish, as someone who, on a door threshold, was making continuous efforts to enter, but continually failing to do so…

The most obvious analysis of this dream would certainly explain it as a consequence of me living surrounded by Castilian everywhere, like an island in the centre of another island; but the curious fact is that none of these enigmatic words seem Castilian. As to the other dream, I will try to look closer to see if I have a better understanding of all this, but chances are that, after what I just wrote (if psychoanalysts are right), the dream will not come back…”

in José Saramago, Cadernos de Lanzarote, Diário-II [not translated]

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