The Interpretation of Dreams

“Fellers, you want to mark whut you dream about, to-night: hit’ll shore come true to-morrow.”

“Yes: but you mustn’t tell whut yer dream was till the hunt’s over, or it’ll spile the charm.”

There ensued a grave discussion of dream-lore, in which the illiterates of our party declared solemn faith. If one dreamt of blood, he would surely see blood the next day. Another lucky sign for a hunter was to dream of quarreling with a woman, for that meant a she-bear; it was favorable to dream of clear water, but muddy water meant trouble. ...

“Waal, who dreamt him a good dream?”

“I did,” affirmed the writer. “I dreamt that I had an old colored woman by the throat and was choking dollars out of her mouth——”

“Good la!” exclaimed four men in chorus; “you hadn’t orter a-told.”

“Why? Wasn’t that a lovely dream?”

“Hit means a she-bear, shore as a cap-shootin’ gun; but you’ve done spiled it all by tellin’. Mebbe somebody’ll git her to-day, but you won’t—your chanct is ruined.”

So the reader will understand why, in this veracious narrative, I cannot relate any heroic exploits of my own in battling with Ursus Major. And so you, ambitious one, when you go into the Smokies after that long-lost bear, remember these two cardinal points of the Law:

(1) Dream that you are fighting some poor old colored woman. (That is easy: the victuals you get will fix up your dream, all right.) And—

(2) Keep your mouth shut about it.