this could have been a surrealist film. I think I might start at the end. at the end, I discovered that the "hell" I was going to for my misdeeds consisted of becoming a hole with an eye in it on a large body covered with eyes. when I saw I was going to be a hole, it became clear to me that it was because that was what I started out as: a hole in the bottom of a public toilet. ok that's gross I guess but the toilet was very clean. I found out that I had first heard of shape-shifting--my punishable offense--because some user of the toilet had read out loud from a flyer advertising this drug that one could take to become a shape shifter. I had at that point become embodied as a person and gone on to discover even greater possibilities in plasticity.
but so anyway I found out that in hell we could sleep to pass the hours and take any drug except the one we had become addicted to: the shapeshifting drug. it ended with a pink floyd style song about sleeping to ease the monotony and taking drugs to dull the boredom but the one drug we could not get was the one we wanted the most.
the story up until then had started in a school library which seemed to be both from undergraduate and graduate school. a student had dropped off her entire library she had amassed from studying perversion and witchcraft for her dissertation. the library had apparently paid her thousands of dollars because she had collected such a comprehensive selection of material. she sold it because she needed the money. this student I recognized as a waking-life coworker of lisagail's at a place she used to work in Seattle. the coworker had been enthusiastic about my returning to school back around 92, 93, so that was her connection with academia in my waking life.
but so I was trying to take some books home and was climbing up on the shelves to reach them when I started seeing these creatures of all sorts of fantastic shapes, mostly human-based but incorporating all sorts of living and nonliving structures within them. at some point the dream turned into a play or film about these shapeshifters and then the play/film expanded out into the audience until most of us had become shapeshifters too. it was clear that this was a church production gone awry and that we who had become shapeshifters were treading in territory considered "demonic" by those who had originally taken us to see the play/film, apparently not realizing what it was about.
two of us, after taking on more fantastic forms, took off from the church crowd celebrating our sudden freedom. this happened twice; the first time I felt some doubt about what I was doing, went back to the church crowd and asked what was wrong. I was told that I would go to hell if I persisted in what I was doing so I stopped for, like, maybe two seconds, but in dreamtime this stretched to a few minutes. then I realized that shapeshifting was my only means to be true to who I knew I was, so I took off again with the full realization that I might end up damned for my choice.
from here things get fragmented. at some point it becomes clear that in order to fly, ride phantom horses, and do all these other shapeshifting things, I have to eat this prickly fruit that hurts my mouth at first, but as I eat it, it shifts too, becoming first an apple and then a banana, because I like bananas better than apples. yeah I guess that's phallic, but honestly in my dream it was just because I really like bananas. for the way they taste!
for what it is worth, I am my current gender throughout: assumed male without genital scrutiny. I am always clothed and the shapes I take are not particularly erotic in any way. at some point though I do meet an anonymous woman and immediately we start to fuck, but I don't even take my clothes off. I seem to have a dick. that scene lasts for just a second before I am whisked away to some other scene. I don't remember the chronology of this episode, so I can't say just what happened before and after. it was the only explicit interjection of sex into my dream.
towards the end, I continue unrepentantly grooving on this quasi-hallucinatory drug and at some point I am told that I must go back to the past to the scene of my death. at first I do not understand because I have lived far into the future beyond the date I was said to have died, but it seems I have been time traveling as well and that in order to keep history from going off track, I have to return to where I began but in a shapeshifted form and there I will meet my old self and be killed, in the past.
it's at that point I discover that I began as an empty form and that my death will be recorded as a double child murder, as a friend of mine also is killed at this time and place. I die, am crestfallen that indeed I have to go to hell for my crime of shapeshifting, but then find out that it is nothing like the hell I had been threatened with: I become part of an interconnected network of beings who find their existence in hell to be tedious but not particularly horrifying in any way. as I said, we take drugs and sleep to pass the time, but the best drug, the shapeshifting drug, is now out of reach because we are dead. our addiction to it keeps us pining for what we've lost, which is the only torture we are subjected to.
I wake up and say to myself "holy shit!" and look at my watch because I feel like I've been dreaming all night. it is two hours since I fell asleep.
I could analyze this one till dawn. I have other things to do right now though.