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Problems with my stepdaughter


Dreaming on the psychoanalyst's couch
WD Snodgrass Poet
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For a long time we just talked, person to person. I sat… sitting… both of us sitting at his desk, and finally we got to the place where I was ready to go to the couch, and I went to the couch and as soon as you do that, you do start dreaming; and I think by now dreams have been in as a way sort of discarded as… as revealing much, but the things that you say about your dream are liable to be very revealing indeed, and as a matter of fact, I… when I come to think of it, some of those dreams were very revealing. And mostly he listens to you talk and to let you define things. I mean he… one of the things he said right off the bat was: 'We don't know what health would be. You have to decide what health for you would be, and we can't take curing you as the real aim because we don't know what cure… what cure would be. We don't know what health would be'.

American poet WD Snodgrass, entered the world of poetry with a bang winning several awards, including the Pulitzer Prize, for his first collection of poetry, Heart's Needle. A backlash followed his controversial fifth anthology “The Fuehrer Bunker”, but in recent years these poems have been reassessed and their importance recognised.

Listeners: William B. Patrick

William B. Patrick is a writer and poet who lives in Troy, New York. Among his work are the poetry volumes "We Didn't Come Here for This" and "These Upraised Hands", the novel "Roxa: Voices of the Culver Family" and the plays "Rescue" and "Rachel's Dinner". His most recent work is the non-fiction book "Saving Troy", based on the year he spent following the Troy Fire Department.

Mr. Patrick has been Writer-in-Residence at the New York State Writers Institute and has taught at Old Dominion University, Onondaga Community College, and Salem State College, and workshops in Screenwriting and Playwriting at the Blue Ridge Writers Conference in Roanoke, Virginia. He has received grants from the Academy of American Poets, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Massachusetts Artists Foundation, and the Virginia Commission for the Arts.

Tags: psychoanalysis, psychiatry, health, cure, dreams

Duration: 1 minute, 20 seconds

Date story recorded: August 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008