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Classic and Contemporary Poetry: Explained

THE DREAM, by             Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography

"The Dream" is a poem by Louise Bogan that was first published in her collection "The Sleeping Fury" in 1937.


The poem describes a dream that the speaker had where they were in a beautiful place surrounded by flowers, birds, and a river. The speaker is content and happy in this dream, but they are suddenly awoken by the sound of a car horn. The dream fades away, and the speaker is left feeling disappointed and wishing they could go back to the dream world.

Poetic Elements:

  • Form: The poem consists of three stanzas with varying line lengths and no discernible rhyme scheme.
  • Imagery: The poem is filled with vivid descriptions of the dream world, including "luminous" flowers, "infinite" water, and "fluttering" birds.
  • Tone: The tone of the poem is wistful and longing, as the speaker expresses a desire to return to the dream world.


"The Dream" is a poignant reflection on the fleeting nature of happiness and the disappointment that can come from being abruptly woken up from a good dream. Through the use of vivid imagery and a wistful tone, Bogan captures the feeling of longing for a perfect world that is just out of reach.

Poem Snippet:

"In a dream I meet

my dead friend. He has,

I know, gone long and far,

and yet he is the same

for the dead are changeless.”

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