A lot of people have been reporting more intense and vivid dreams recently so I thought it would be a good time to share an exercise I use for dream interpretation where I turn my dreams into poetry. This exercise is great because our dreams already hold such poignant symbolism and simply writing what you saw can turn into a poem rich with symbolic significance. While sometimes I do enjoy looking online for dream interpretations, this method offers a more personal understanding of what the symbols may mean for you.
Our dreams are internal guidance systems that offer us a glimpse into our inner worlds. What emotions are we not addressing in our waking lives? What fantasies are we repressing? What obstacles can we solve through a different perspective? The more you commune with your dreams and recognize them as portals to your subconscious beliefs the more they will reveal to you, about you.
You don’t need to understand your dreams logically to reap these benefits. Working with them through poetry connects you with them on a soul level of understanding. With this exercise you’ll use creative writing to get a deeper look into your subconscious mind. Here are the steps:
1. Keep a journal by your bed (if you’re used to checking your phone when you wake up, put your phone inside the journal to remind yourself of this practice) or you may also wish to voice record yourself telling your dream and then you can listen back to it.
2. (Optional) Write down your dream as if you are experiencing it in real time. For example, “I am walking down a long hallway, all of the doors are opening as I pass.”
3. Take the most poetic aspects of your dream and write them in poem format. This is a creative writing practice so there are not many rules; you can repeat lines or add details, just have fun! I have “fictionalized” some dreams with ideas that came to me in waking life. I do not believe this takes away any significance to the dream interpretation and I see my creative mind and subconscious mind working together to bring insights on every level.
4. You will get a sense of your inner state by the tone of the poem and its built-in symbolism. If you felt like there was an obstacle in your dream, you can continue the dream with your poem and try to work towards a solution. This will allow you to subconsciously be open to finding a solution for the problem in waking life. For example, once I dreamt there were intruders in my home that were my boss at the time and his assistant. I spent the dream running around the house trying to get away from them and woke up before I did. When I wrote it out I decided to end the poem by telling the intruders that this is my house and they don’t belong in it. This simple exercise helped me understand that my boss was taking up too much of my emotional being and I needed to put boundaries in place.
5. (Optional) Play with friends! Once you have some experience you can do this with your friends. Have your friend recall their dream to you while you write out key phrases in poem format. This should open a dialogue that could potentially bring on some needed clarity and intimacy.
6. (Optional) Share! I put a lot of my dream poetry on my personal page (@vanessa_cuccia). If you feel called to it share your own, use the hashtag #dreampoems.
7. Want even more intense dreams? Sleeping with crystals under your pillows or near your bedside will do that. Typically crystals that are shades of blue, purple, clear, or white will help because they are associated with higher realms of consciousness. You can also sleep with a black crystal under your pillow or near your bedside to offer protection while you travel on the astral plane.
BONUS – For more information about using dreams for self-awareness and even sexual exploration check out my book Crystal Healing & Sacred Pleasure.
Some of my dream poems: