Into the Heart of Darkness and Light: A Dream Sequence (1986)
Project info

"The fences of the light are down,
All but the briskest riders thrown,
And worlds hang on the trees."
—Dylan Thomas, "When once the twilight locks no longer"

Once when I was a young boy, my brother Terry came into the bedroom and found me sleeping. Later on he said that I’d been lying there with my eyes wide open. As a story it is a short one, but it has lingered in my imagination, turning from fact to metaphor and back again, becoming emblematic of a personal mythos. Dreaming with my eyes wide open: that is the main idea.

"A camera is a machine for dreaming."
—Jean Epstein, "L’intelligence d’une machine"

The dream of which I speak, which I imagine here before you, is a place we know well- an anyday kind of place, filled with an anyday kind of mystery. A silent spirit breathes with a quiet pulse, a heartbeat quivers the leaves in a tree and is echoed in the footprints on warm asphalt. Plunging into this elemental space and surfacing somewhere past immediate reality, this place is Here: to be lived in, breathed of, seen … and dreamed upon.

"I woke up on the roadside
Daydreamin’ about the way things sometimes are"
—Bob Dylan, "Idiot Wind"

This is a story: there are no words. This is a journey: there is no path. This a place: there is no time. Only you— and your eyes. The story is yours, mine, of you, for your eyes and mine. Find a still moment for this dreaming: with eyes wide open, the way is there. Then you will have words, there will be a direction and you will find time.

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ALL PHOTOGRAPHS made 1982-85 in Madison, Wisconsin and environs (Dane County), © 1986, Lewis Koch