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Analysis and comments on A Dream Within A Dream by Edgar Allan Poe

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Comment 109 of 709, added on November 10th, 2006 at 4:50 AM.

Jonathan Ross is dubbed "risque" by Ofcom but not in breach of rules over
an interview with David Cameron...

Darrell Anglin
Comment 108 of 709, added on April 27th, 2006 at 11:02 AM.

I'm doing a project on this poem, and it is one of my favorite ones by him.
I LOVE IT!!!

Star
Comment 107 of 709, added on April 25th, 2006 at 8:17 PM.

(After doing an essay on transcendentalism) I kind of get the feeling that
this isn't so much about just mortality, as it is about reality itself.
Popular thinking at the time, at least among poets and such, was that we as
humans aren't really capable of perceiving "reality"... rather we each have
our own view of it, although no two people can have the same exact view of
any one thing. I think this poem is what happened when the beloved and
depressing Poe thought too much on that, and realized that maybe there
isn't even a reality... but either way, does it matter? The first stanza
is like his accepting the concept, but the second is like he's realizing
that its a little creepy in nature and leaves us without any substance or
anything solid or secure.

Sarah from United States
Comment 106 of 709, added on April 16th, 2006 at 7:55 AM.

I have posted about the meaning of this poem before, but would like to
repost it and add some comments in response to some other comments made in
response.

I believe this poem is Poe coming to terms with his mortality and maybe
also losing faith in God or at least questioning God. In the first two
lines, Poe is saying farewell to life, his immortality. I disagree with
the interpretation that Poe is saying goodbye to a lover. He is giving a
kiss on the brow, not the lips or the cheek. It seems a more "general"
farwell. He goes on to say, "you are not wrong, who deem, that my days
have been a dream." It seems to me that he is talking not to just one
person, but to everyone.

Some people have commented that poe was only 18 when he wrote this poem,
and therefore he was too young to be thinking about his mortality. I
disagree. It is obvious that he was very advanced in his thinking for
being so young. It is amazing that he wrote this poem at only 18 in
itself! This is also an age when more mature thinking starts to show
itself. He was in the army at this time, and in war, soldiers die, so I
think this is a perfect time for young Poe to start thinking about his
death and questioning whether God exists. When he says "you are not wrong,
who deem, that my days have been a dream.", he may be saying that his
thinking before this was dreamy and immature and that he is finally growing
up.

His days are dreams, because they do not exist anymore. The days past are
gone. Dreams end. Life also has an end. All his days pass into
nonexistance, just like the larger "dream" of his life eventually will.
Dreams (days) within a dream (life). His previous hopes that this isn't so,
that he will always exist, that there is something more, is gone. "Hope
has flown away." and once it's gone and doubt creeps in, you can't go back
to your old thinking.

In the second stanza, nonexistance is given the form of the ocean, and his
days (or time in general, as sand is often a metphor for time in poems) are
grains of sand, that he is powerless to stop from slipping away. I think
here he wanted to give the impression and image of an hourglass. The waves
of nonexistance are stealing his days, and will eventually take all of
them.

Even though he has accepted the fact of his mortality in the first stanza,
he still fights it in the second, pleading with God (if he exists) to save
him, to let him know that his life will not pass into the "deep" of
nothingness. He tries to hold on to just one grain of sand; just one moment
in time that will stretch forever and save him from his impending death.
He wants to believe and have hope again that his existance is not just a
dream and has purpose, so instead of stating it like at the end of the
first stanza, in desperation he asks it as a question in the second.

"Is all that we see or seem, but a dream within a dream?"

Sam
Comment 105 of 709, added on April 12th, 2006 at 2:14 PM.

i am Edgar Allan Poe's like #1 fan, his poetry comes to life, he pulls you
into his fantasy with his work, i am truely astounded by the fact that
someone could write with such meaning and such grace, hear i have not such
a sweet melody, from the heart in which it came.

Danielle from United States
Comment 104 of 709, added on April 11th, 2006 at 7:33 AM.

This is an inspring poem in many ways!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

jesus from United States
Comment 103 of 709, added on April 4th, 2006 at 9:21 PM.

this is a great poem! Yahoo!

bobby from Australia
Comment 102 of 709, added on March 29th, 2006 at 9:27 AM.

I JUST LOVE THIS POEM!!!!!

LORRIE from United States
Comment 101 of 709, added on March 20th, 2006 at 7:08 PM.

Of Course this poem is beautiful, in a melancholic sort of way, but then
pain can be a beautiful thing. I do not have a great understanding for
poetry, i thing that i am atempting to rectify. However it is my opinion
that those who spend there time looking to much into the poems meaning to
the author and not at the poems meaning to ones self are not truely
savoring the beauty of the words. That is not to say that Poes meaning is
not important, just that true poetry speaks to everyone in a different way
and should be apreciated be everyone differently, but the general idea
should be the same. For a school project i understand. But for those who
study to much into the poems backround and not enough time into the poems
depth you really are learning nothing of life, love, pain and all things
that make life worth living, which is what poetry is all about

Leif Ericson from United Kingdom
Comment 100 of 709, added on March 20th, 2006 at 4:36 PM.

i think that this poem is very well writen. you have your oppinions... some
nice and some crude... this poem is like a love poem so i believe it is
nice.

candace

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Information about A Dream Within A Dream

Poet: Edgar Allan Poe
Poem: A Dream Within A Dream
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 1835 times


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