"Last Night I Dreamed of Chickens" Review

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The poem “Last Night I Dreamed of Chickens” by Jack Prelutsky is about someone whose mind is constantly spinning. They are overwhelmed with their life and can not seem to settle down. This is proven where the poem says “…there were chickens everywhere, they were standing on my stomach, they were nesting in my hair…” The chickens represent the person’s thoughts and the fact that they will not leave him alone is the chaos that the character feels. The author Jack Prelutsky has written many children’s poems. He was also on the Children’s cartoon, Arthur, in the episode “I’m a poet”. He played himself as a special guest judge for the Lakewood poetry contest.

The chickens “…nesting in my hair…pecking at my pillow…” Symbolize restlessness. The fact that the chickens are literally everywhere this person looks shows that he can not get away from his thoughts and that they are bothering him a great deal because until he settles his mind he will always be extremely restless. “When I woke today, I noticed…there were eggs on top of me.” This ending of the poem implies that his thoughts that he can not get away from are about women, the eggs being a maternal symbol. From a Freudian point of view, the eggs are babies that he has had with multiple women and he does not want them to find him and bother him to live up to his responsibilities of being a father. This would make the chickens his thoughts as well as the women who he has had children with. On the other hand from a Marxist point of view, the “chickens” could represent the government and how it is constantly annoying you and causing you grief. It is always in your mind and it is impossible to get it out because it’s a huge part of everyday life in society now days.

In conclusion, the poem “Last Night I Dreamed of Chickens” is about a man’s inability to clear his restless mind of thoughts that are troubling him, by implying that the chickens which are bothering him in his dreams are actually those thoughts. He needs to solve his problems and then he will be able to settle his mind and himself. The chaos that is obviously going on in this man’s mind appears to be horrendous and he should take a break from the “chickens” or women that are bothering him so deeply, or the thoughts on how the government constantly is influencing the thoughts and opinions that the citizens as well as yourself are having and experiencing. That’s how this poem by Jack Prelutsky is about someone whose mind is constantly spinning, and is overwhelmed with their life and can not seem to settle down in his mind to avoid these chaotic “dreams” that he has had.





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