Books We’re Reading: The Art of a Dream, with Romeo and Juliet

“You are a lover. Borrow Cupid’s wings and soar with them above a common bound.” – William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

Beginning the week, our class has changed the focus of our reading yet again. Instead of a
traditional novel, however, we’ve decided on reading the written Shakespearean play
Romeo and Juliet. And though we aren’t very far, I do have a lot to say already! (A lot of blog posts will be coming up for the story very soon, don’t worry!)

johann_heinrich_fc3bcssli_058One of the parts that interested me so far was when Mercutio torments Romeo with the story of Queen Mab, a fantastical fairy figure who interferes with sleeping people. After it, when Romeo gets clearly annoyed and exasperated by the continues and ever-detailed tale, Mercutio says the quote, “True, I talk of dreams, which are the children of an idle brain” (Page 49).

Dreams, in themselves, are a very strange subject. Though I haven’t done any research on dreams officially, I can relate my own experiences. Experiences may be especially strong as well, seeing that Romeo and Juliet is not much of a scientific story anyhow. The play itself, both by its themes and writing, is reliant on emotion more than anything else. Thus, may dreams be treated the same in relation to it.392919306_c832598c18_b

In my understanding, dreams are almost exactly what Mercutio says they are. Though it’s fun to imagine dreams as prophetic, especially in the sense of literature like mythology, I can’t say I’ve ever had a dream come true. Instead, what I have had is almost a flood of what I’ve recently experienced. Those who I have recently talked to, people I have recently thought about, places I’ve seen (or imagined), and even common emotions seem to sway the dreams I remember most.

Though maybe my limited views on dreams are the issue. Dreams behave this way for me, but maybe not as much so for others. Or, for those that do believe in the prophetic virtues of a picou2c_henri_pierre_-_romeo_and_julietdream, maybe these people simply dream more, experience more, act in a way that almost demands things to happen. Or maybe it’s luck.


Either way, out of literature, I understand dreams are consistent and thus are demanding of our attention. Whether discussing their truth or simply talking about them, I do think that people can agree on a dream’s artistry more than anything.
Not that they’re serious, no, but that they are such an intense weave of ideas and scenarios put to work all for some foggy, unclear, and debatable reason. That combination, to me, may just be as artistic as the play mentioning dreams as it does. 

Thank you!

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