Bless Me Ultima - Dreams

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Symbolism in Dreams

In Rudolfo Anaya's Bless Me, Ultima, the author uses Tony's dreams as a way of displaying various symbols. Three symbols that are used often are weather, water, and the Golden Carp. Weather is used to represent conflict. Water represents cleansing, and rejuvenation. The Golden Carp symbolizes religion and Tony's beliefs. Because dreams are a not an exact mirror of reality, they become the perfect tool for introducing symbolism. The author uses the dream as a way to access the recurring themes of the book.



Weather affects the lives of everyone. When the weather turns foul, it makes life more difficult. Stormy weather in Tony's dreams represents the conflict in his life, and the lives of those around him. One example of the weather in his dreams is the wind. In one of Tony's dreams the wind is used to represent conflict that disrupts the peace that is a still lake. "There was a howling wind as the moon rose and it's powers pulled at the still waters of the lake."(Anaya 120) The wind here is used to represent forces of disturbance caused by nuclear testing taking place south of the town, just as wind kicks up dust and blurs the view. Another element of storms is thunder and lightning. In Tony's dream he sees, ".....a flash of lightning struck and out of the thunder a dark figure stepped forth. It was Ultima......I sought more answers, but she was gone, evaporated into a loud noise."(Anaya 71) Lightning can offer glimpses of illumination, but then darkness returns, and the noise of the thunder that follows deafens the ears. This represents the moments of good that can occur within the midst of conflict. Ultima's appearance gives Tony a glimpse of where he needs to search for innocence, but he is still confused from this encounter. He continues to search for answers. Another significannot weather occurrence is the appearance of mist. " The mist swirled around me. I was at the river, and I...
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