A Dream Within A Dream by Edgar Allen Poe

Summary: A Dream Within A Dream: is a poem about a dream within a dream by Edgar Allen Poe in 1827 when he was a teenager looking down his own road of life


Speaker - Speaks about dreams within dreams


  • In the kiss and parting of a loved ones and in his recognition that those who "deem", the speaker says that their judgement is not wrong
  • The speaker says that his days have been dreams where hope had been gone or fleeting
  • The speaker says that when we "see or seem" we are in a dream and in this dream within a dream he is on a beach
  • Upon the sound of waves, the speaker lets grains of sand slip through his hand and that we, and at the very least his loved ones, drop into a sea of death, a "pitiless wave"
  • The speaker weeps for the grains of sand but it will do nothing for them for it is a dream that one cannot change and those grains which fall into the "pitiless wave" are gone
  • The speaker asks if "all we see or seem but a dream within a dream" to may be hear a "no" so that he could fall back into reality
  • The "pitiless wave" is death

Other Notes:

  • A remembrance of loved ones as they pass away and a visit into the windows of the mind might have been motivation for this poem
  • Poe is known to have significant events in his life that may have inspired poems such as this one to be written by him

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