An Analysis of Dreams by Timothy Findley "We are such stuff as dreams are made on"ÃÂ (Shakespeare The Tempest) perhaps most accurately sums up the human fascination with their own dreams. Fleeting, transitory, and possessing their own reason, these strange passes of fancy strike attention and draw importance to themselves. In Timothy Findley's short story "Dreams"ÃÂ, the human obsession with, and dependence upon, dreams is taken up in detail. The story can be seen as symbolic in its entirety, with each aspect of the story representing some true part of life.
The main character of Findley's story is readily seen to be Doctor Mimi Menlo. Doctor Menlo enters the story in the first paragraph as a concerned wife, worried that her husband, Doctor Everett Menlo, is not sleeping at night. The medium for the story is revealed in the second paragraph of the story, when it is revealed that Mimi Menlo is attempting to stay awake through the use of both caffeine and a drug called Dexedrine.
When an amphetamine is substituted for sleep numerous side effects can occur, not least of which are anxiety, restlessness and confusion.
Doctor Mimi has been taking 5 mg of Dexedrine each evening. This drug obviously has an adverse affect, as can be seen by the incredibly realistic and lifelike dream which she has. This dream takes up the rest of the story, and can be interpreted as symbolic of the trials which Mimi is going through in her life.
There are numerous indications that the events of the span of days described are symbolic and representative of Mimi's inner conflict. The first, and perhaps most important of these, is Kenneth Albright, her husband's patient. Kenneth Albright is described as "uniquely schizophrenic"ÃÂ (Findley 112), a man who had attempted suicide four times before...