Full Employment


The woman feared that her dream—a quiet nightmare—foretold a difficult future…

In the dream…

She’s arrived in North Carolina and can’t find a job.

Because the woman—a co-worker of mine—was actually preparing to move to North Carolina, she wondered if the dream should be taken literally…

From my own hard experience, I’ve learned that most dreams are symbolic—even such a simple and direct one…

So if I’d had my wits about me in the moment, I would’ve asked her, “What does ‘job’ mean to you?”

Is “job” just about employment?  Just about finding a stall that’ll provide you with a paycheck?

I’d have asked her to think of “job” in symbolic terms, before she went with a literal interpretation.  What’s the deeper meaning of “job”?

A good question for anyone to ask, I think, at a time when the job position that’s here today may be gone tomorrow.

When we’re unemployed, or underemployed, we may struggle to find a sense of purpose, a sense of who we are.  So now, more than ever, I believe we need to reconsider the idea of “job”…

I believe we need a concept of “job” that will provide our lives with an anchor, a framework, a foundation—pick your metaphor…

When I’m stepping into a gaping unknown, I need to feel that there’s always something beneath my feet—something no one can take from me.  I need to know what my true job is—my reason for being here.

No matter where I go, no matter what befalls me—no matter what happens to me “out there”—I’ll still have that concept, that belief, that bedrock, for support.  I’ll still have that job.

I certainly hope my co-worker found something for herself in North Carolina.  Maybe the dream was telling her, “No, you don’t belong there.”  But it’s not my dream, so I can’t say.

However, I can say this, again from my own experience: such dreams can help us find our Job.  Coming as they do from the unconscious, they can show us our deeper purpose.

© 2012, Michael R. Patton
sky rope poetry


About Michael Patton

I am a poet, novelist, and fabulist...A new mythologist, a peace miller, a dream worker...I don't qualify as an illustrator or photographer--I just "make pictures"...I have thirteen books available at amazon... I currently reside in northwest Arkansas, but have lived and worked all over the United States... I'm self-taught, for the most part--which is like searching for the right door in the dark. It's an on-going process.... I don't want to write MY story, I want OUR story, so that's what I'm studying: the human story: past, present, future, in its many aspects--including the spiritual. I'm proceeding at a slow crawl.... I don't see the inner world and outer world as separate. By learning about myself, I learn about others, I learn about my world.... Conversely, as I struggle to understand what I see OUT THERE, I learn about myself.... But to be clear: I don't claim any special understanding. I'm still purblind, still only half-awake.... After frustrating experience with the publisher of my first novel, I've published on my own, beginning with e-books, with plans to move into print and audio. Even video.... Along with a second novel, I've now published eight books of poetry. Each poetry book focuses on a theme. For instance, the collection GLORIOUS TEDIOUS TRANSFORMATION is about the slow difficult wonderful process of change.... In that book, as with all my work, I try to be accessible to a general audience, while also striving to achieve a certain literary quality.
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