Friday Night Jukebox: Dorveille
What is it? Set your alarm for about halfway through your usual sleep cycle. Get up. Stretch. Read a bit, drink some water, take care of any other biological needs you might have. Then go back to sleep for the rest of the night.
And that’s it. Simple, easy, wonderful.
Segmented sleep is one of those little things we appear to have lost in the industrial era, but there is no reason we can’t reclaim it. The first sleep takes care of business. It’s the sleep that grabs you and doesn’t let go. You won’t dream. You’ll just rest.
The second sleep is a crazy fantasy world, full of dreams, sometimes lucid, plus evocative not-quite-dreaming ideation, and I know this sounds kooky, but it’s just a whole lot of fun. The dorveille (French, literally “sleep-wake”) makes sleeping fun again. It also leaves me feeling way more rested than I otherwise might.
If as an adult you have lost the ability to dream, the dorveille might just restore it. I know it did for me. I barely consider it an adequate night of sleep anymore if I don’t wake up at around 3AM, read a bit from my Dwight Goddard, stretch, and go back to sleep again.
Oddly enough, there’s a song about it, and it’s by one of my favorite bands. It captures the mood perfectly: