Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate a Second Before Awakening
If you are a man under the age of 70, avoid the ladies in grey or green wool suits and furs
- Whenever in Rome, visit Bernini’s Elephant and Obelisk, Pulicino della Minerva (trans. Minerva’s little chick), in the Piazza della Minerva. 1 1 Roman goddess of music, magic, poetry, wisdom, medicine, commerce, weaving and crafts (born from head of Jupiter like Athena/Zeus). Also has an owl.
- Then go to the pizza shop around the corner and have the most divine mushroom pizza on the planet.
- Afterwards, walk 4 meters and pay homage to the Piè di Marmo, a giant marble foot—all that remains of a once mammoth statue near an ancient temple devoted to Isis and Serapis. Usually, the space between the wall and the foot is piled with garbage awaiting pickup.
- Turn around and face the other side of street, where you will see the most adorable little present of a chocolate shop. Order the marrons glacées and hot chocolate. If you are a man under the age of 70, avoid the ladies in grey or green wool suits and furs—they want your money and your companionship and they want you to walk their little dogs while they watch Italian soap operas. (I have been told this chocolate shop is no longer there but I do not believe it.)
Of this painting, Dalí said (in 1962, the year of: John Glenn’s first orbit of the earth; the Cuban Missile Crisis; the first packet of salt and vinegar flavoured crisps sold in America): “to express for the first time in images Freud‘s discovery of the typical dream with a lengthy narrative, the consequence of the instantaneousness of a chance event which causes the sleeper to wake up. Thus, as a bar might fall on the neck of a sleeping person, causing them to wake up and for a long dream to end with the guillotine blade falling on them 2 2 The guillotine reference is to Alfred Maury's dream, La Guillotine, see Dream 1861. This dream is a dream to specialists who favour a materialistic, biological interpretation of dreams, such as Lydiard Heneage Horton. -the noise of the bee here provokes the sensation of the sting which will awaken Gala.” *
*For fun, google ‘sting which will awaken gala.’ (Gala was Dalí’s wife.)
Concerning Dalí and Gala (according to Luis Buñuel, from his autobiography, My Last Sigh):
‘One day we all went in a rowboat for a picnic among the rocks […] and I said to Dali that the view reminded me of a Sorolla (a rather mediocre painter from Valencia).
“How can you bear to say such stupid things!” Gala shouted at me. “And in the presence of such gorgeous rocks!”
By the time the picnic was over, we’d all had a great deal to drink. I’ve forgotten what the argument was about, but Gala was attacking me with her usual ferocity when I suddenly leapt to my feet, threw her to the ground, and began chocking her. […] Dali fell to his knees and begged me to stop; I was blind with rage, but I knew I wasn’t going to kill her. Strange as it may seem, all I wanted was to see the tip of her tongue between her teeth. Finally, I let her go, and two days later she left.
‘Dalí has told many lies, and yet, paradoxically, he’s incapable of lying. Much of what he says is only to scandalise, like the time he went to the Museum of Natural History and claimed to have been so stimulated by the dinosaur skeletons that he’d had to take Gala out into the corridor and sodomize her. This is obviously a joke, but Dalí’s so bemused by himself that everything he says seems to him the absolute truth.
Dalí’s also a great fantasizer, with a certain penchant for sadism: but in fact his sex life was practically nonexistent. As a young man, he was totally asexual, and forever making fun of friends who fell in love or ran after women–until the day he lost his virginity to Gala and wrote me a six-page letter detailing, in his own inimitable fashion, the marvels of carnal love. (Gala’s the only woman he’s ever made love to.) Of course, he’s seduced many, particularly American hieresses; but those seductions usually entailed stripping them naked in his apartment, frying a couple of eggs, putting them on the women’s shoulders, and, without a word, showing them to the door.)’