Saturday, October 5, 2013

A Dream Within A Dream by Edgar Allan Poe

Three little wild black kittens in my backyard, posing.  They're very mischievous.
By Edgar Allan Poe
Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow —
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand —
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep — while I weep!
O God! Can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?


Oh, what a fabulous book!  It had just the right amount of suspense, mystery and horror and the plot was riveting.  I love it when I read a book that makes me want to turn every single page as fast as I can, then, in the end, I don't want it to be over....ever.  This was such a story for me.  It was way better than "The Shining" but to be fair, Mr. King had over 30 years experience under this belt when he wrote this one.  King mentions the above Poe poem several times in the story.  Here's one passage:
"What you call double dreaming is well known to psychiatrists, and of particular interest to Jungians, who call it false awakening.  The first dream is usually a lucid dream, meaning the dreamer knows he is dreaming---"
"Yes!" Dan cried.  "But the second one---"
"The dreamer believes he is awake," Kemmer said.  "Jung made much of this, even ascribing precognitive powers to these dreams...but of course we know better, don't we Dan?"
"Of course," Dan had agreed.
"The poet Edgar Allan Poe described the false awakening phenomenon long before Carl Jung was born.  He wrote, 'All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream.' ....
~Stephen King, "Doctor Sleep", page 77
I've had too many of these dreams to count...they're sometimes disturbing and sometimes enlightening, but always fascinating, mainly because I often remember them in detail.  Most dreams I have, I forget a few moments after I wake up. 
It's hot and muggy here in the swamp.  We didn't get any rain from tropical storm Karen, but we're supposed to get a cold front through tomorrow night.  I can't wait to drag out my booties (short boots) and scarves.  I've had enough 90-something degree days to last me until next year.  I've been busy reading (of course) and doing some Fall cleaning.  Our stove (oven) died a few months ago and we're shopping around for a new stove.  Gotta have an oven for holiday baking.
Happy October, everyone. 
"That old September feeling... of summer passing, vacation nearly done, obligations gathering, books and football in the air.... Another fall, another turned page: there was something of jubilee in that annual autumnal beginning, as if last year's mistakes and failures had been wiped clean by summer." ~Wallace Stegner

1 comment:

Kelly said...

I love Poe and I love this particular poem! I love the photo, too. I believe I've told you that two of my grandkitties are black.