Interpreting Dreams

By Jim Mize
Excerpt from A Creek Trickles Through It

I had a dream.

The dream had a foggy feel to it, as if I were standing in poor light. Water lapped against my thighs, and I held my 4-wt. fly rod in my right hand. The fog swirled and I recognized the hole. I was deep in the Appalachian Mountains fishing a long, slow pool where brown trout could outgrow this mountain stream.

I saw myself casting my favorite streamer, a big red fox pattern with a hot orange wing that glowed in the low light. It landed up against a heavy log and immediately stopped. I set the hook and the line stretched tight as piano wire, singing in my dream under the strain. Slowly, whatever I had hooked moved away from the log and went upstream. My line sliced the water following and pointing at my anticipated catch.

Who knows how long you fight a fish in a dream? It could have been minutes or days. Finally, after this lapse of time, I gained line and brought my adversary near my feet. The dark water hid him from my sight. Backing up, I planned to beach my catch on the sandbar.

As it reached the shallows, my catch stood and walked up on the beach beside me. It was a small pig. Waking abruptly, I sat up puzzled. What could it possibly mean? Catching a pig? It had to symbolize something meaningful.

Looking outside, the sun was trying to peek over the horizon, but was being swallowed by an incoming cloudbank. A storm was rolling in. Thinking about my dream, I had a hunch. It was a premonition. Perhaps it meant that I should go fish that stream on this overcast day, and if I did I’d catch a “hawg,” as we Southerners often refer to a big fish.

E-mailing work, I alerted them of my absence and went to the mountains. I hiked in to the hole I had seen in my dream with a box full of streamers. The fog swirled around the hole and my confidence built. I was living my dream.

On my first cast, nothing happened. Then on the second cast, still nothing. But on the third cast, I reached a little farther on my backcast and wrapped up on a hemlock branch. This part had been left out of my dream.

The morning passed without a strike. By afternoon, I rested the hole and my arm for a full hour. Then I thrashed some more. Still nothing. By late afternoon, exhausted and hungry, I headed home, wondering what my dream could have meant.

As is my habit when I’ve fished this stream, I stopped at my favorite barbecue joint and had one of their vinegar-based sandwiches with enough tartness to curl your tongue. I chomped and chewed until halfway through the sandwich it hit me. My dream revealed itself as I noticed the name of the place on the menu—Hawg Wild.

All along, I’d thought my dream meant that if I went fishing that day I’d catch a hawg; in reality, all it meant was that if I went fishing, I would eat a hawg.

This just proves that interpreting dreams, like many things, should be left to professionals.

Jim Mize likes to both catch and eat hogs. “Interpreting Dreams” is an excerpt from his award-winning book, A Creek Trickles Through It. You can find it on Amazon or purchase autographed copies at

A Humorous Book for Fly Fishermen
Awarded First Place in the Southeastern Outdoor Press
Association Excellence in Craft Competition

Award-winning author, Jim Mize, has written a humorous book specifically for fly fishermen. Titled, A Creek Trickles Through It, this collection delves into such topics as carnivorous trees, persnickety trout, and the dangers of fly-tying. Whether you are an arm-chair fisherman or one with well-earned leaky waders, A Creek Trickles Through It will be a welcome addition to your fishing library.

Jim has received over eighty Excellence-In-Craft awards including one for his first book, The Winter of Our Discount Tent. His articles have appeared in Gray’s Sporting Journal, Fly Fisherman Magazine, Fly Fishing & Tying Journal, as well as many conservation publications. You may order copies through his website and online store at