Literary Response Essay

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Literary Response on “A Dream within a Dream” by Edgar Allan Poe Is life real or is it just an illusion? Does reality really exist, and do people have no way of knowing what is real and what is not? Edgar Allan Poe’s “A Dream within a Dream”, published in 1849, explores the ultimate mystery: reality. The poem dramatizes the speaker’s confusion and pain in watching the important things disappear. He realizes that he cannot grasp onto one grain of sand, and this leads to his final question: should he stay dreaming, or should he come back to reality? The main theme of “A Dream within a Dream” is the nature of reality and how one can tell if life is real or not, especially during the phase of change and/or loss. By looking at the poet’s use of tone, symbolism, and structure, he was able to express an excruciating context. Throughout A “Dream within a Dream”, Poe presents a speaker who expresses his misery for the death of a loved one as well as the…show more content…
The scheme for the entire poem is this: AAABBCCDDBB EEFFBBBGGCCBB. Both stanzas are composed almost entirely of couplets, but they also contain a sequence of three lines in a row that rhyme. Although the two stanzas are not the same length, their similar use of couplets and their rhyme scheme create a pattern that matches the parallel of their ideas and makes it very powerful because each word at the end of the line rhymes. Poe’s speaker draws attention to the vowel E and constantans D and C. “All that we see or seem” (10) and, “yet how few they creep / Through my fingers to the deep” (16-17) show an example of assonance; there is a repeated vowel pattern with the long E sound which keeps it smooth as the audience reads through many euphonic words and pleasing sounds. Because of the constant vowel pattern, it can be inferred that the poet wants the audience to keep the poem’s title in mind since he gives away the

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