Delivered in a dream and wrapped up in a song | Ron Colone | Columnist

Delivered in a dream and wrapped up in a song | Ron Colone | Columnist

In the 1960s, Frank Sinatra had a No. 1 hit with a song called “Strangers in the Night.” It was the title track of his biggest-selling album, and it won the Grammy for Best Vocal Performance, Record of the Year and Best Arrangement. I found myself humming it today while thinking about the bizarre encounter I had last night with a group of strangers — in a dream.

The bizarre part is not that there were strangers in my dream; In fact, according to dream researchers, 50% to 80% of the people that appear in our dreams are ones we’ve never met. No, the strange part is that immediately upon being jolted from my sleep by the dream, I realized I had met this same group of people before in at least one other dream that occurred months, if not years, earlier.

I don’t recall the details, or any of the feelings or insights associated with the earlier dream(s), but the notion that there could be a cast of characters who follow along with us over time on some nonphysical dream plane was intriguing to me.

Last night’s dream took place in their apartment. There were two adult males (one who was the dominant figure of the group who walked around with a drink in his hand, complaining about everything), one young woman, two middle-aged women and three little kids running around playing. The features of the apartment included a stairway leading to an upper floor, a kitchen sink full of dirty dishes, a torn leather couch and a refrigerator — in the middle of the living room.

More important than all of that to me was the presence of an actual dear friend of mine who mysteriously dropped out of, or removed himself from, my life a year ago, after 25 years of almost monthly communication.

Our estrangement has bothered me this whole past year, but my attempts to reach him have been for naught, as the phone number and email address I have for him are no longer working, and the fact that he lives 2,400 miles away makes a drop- in unfeasible at this point. I think I was able to get a message to him through a mutual friend, that I’m concerned and wish to speak with him, but so far nothing.

In the dream, I confronted him about why he cut me out, but he shushed me, not wanting to talk about it in front of the group.

It has renewed my resolve to find a way to reconnect with my friend, or at least make sure that he knows I’m trying.

As for the reoccurrence of the strangers, I wonder if we are somehow associated.

Researchers and interpreters of dreams insist that the strangers we meet in our sleep state are really just aspects of ourselves, and that the things we notice about those strangers are things we should be noticing, and perhaps doing something about ourselves.

So, I take stock of all the details I noticed about all the people and the apartment itself, and I consider the possible interpretations, but it takes only a moment or so for me to be reminded and to embrace the words of one of my greatest teachers, which are the lyrics of Bob Dylan. And I start to sing:

“At dawn, my lover comes to me and tells me of her dreams,

With no attempts to shovel a glimpse into the ditch of what each one means,

At times I think there are no words but these to tell what’s true,

And there are no truths outside the Gates of Eden.”

And I shake my head and marvel at how often, for me, whether it’s from Dylan or Sinatra or a floating group of strangers, the message and the meaning are delivered in a dream and come wrapped up in a song.