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GARCIA, Jan Renzo M.


Dream Stories by Merlinda Bobis Analysis

1. Colours
"Colours" tells of a man on the fourth floor of a flat which overlooks the
bedroom of a woman he often stares at. The man had a special case of
blurring in his eyes; but he can see the woman wearing bright-colored
dresses and scarves. They finally meet at the bus stop. She greets him first,
but all he says is "That's a pretty yellow. Cheerful," to the conversation she
tries to open. A few days later she knocks at his door asking for help to
bring the husband to the hospital. He accompanies her and she is grateful.
But again he does not talk even if he wants to hold her hand. Then she
disappears and he never sees her again. Two things can be concluded from
the story. First is that the man speechless in front of her, second is the
woman tries to be friendly, but he hardly responds.
The succeeding paragraph rounds up their story wherein they have no
chance to be together. He admits that he has fallen in love but soon falls out
of love before he could declare it. True, he has tried to make contact with
the woman but then he says it is an absurd wish; then he falls asleep, a
deep sleep. This story is all about regrets, pain and sadness. The man
cannot talk to the girl for whatever reason and there are lots of people like
this. Those who cannot talk to the one they fall for because they are scared
to hurt and to get hurt.
2. The Sadness Collector
This story has a situation that is not so rare nowadays, where the
husband and the child remain at home while the wife works as a domestic
helper in another country. This is a common situation in our country.
The child in the story named Rica is now five years old and was just
three when her mother left to another country. Ricas father works in a
factory and only sees her at night. Sometimes she watches TV and plays
with the pretty little things sent by her mother. Early this year a picture of
her employer's baby was included in the packages her mother sent. There
are also times where Rica does not like to eat supper and father scolds her
or tells her stories. Her favorite is the story of Big Lady who comes in the
evenings to eat the sadness she has gathered from the homes. Rica is

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fascinated with that story so much that her head is filled with images about
the Big Lady, Rica passes away the time by drawing stick figures of her with
a tummy that grows bigger every day. She knows that it will eventually
burst and she waits for that moment. Signifying the great amount of
sadness Rica has deep inside of her.
That evening her father comes home late as usual to avoid answering
her questions about the baby in the picture. But he is drunk and shouts.
"That whore!" as he kicks the pots and pans in the kitchen that fall
cluttering on the floor. Rica screams and collapses as he takes her in his
arms. The father, both in anger and remorse tries comfort Rica who thought
that it was the Big Lady who has come back. For letting out his anger at his
wife he realizes that the havoc he created has caused his daughter's fears
so he assures her of his love without telling his real feelings; he even hides
his closed fists behind her back.
Clearly, the story greatly imposes the theme of hiding sadness and
pain to prevent problems and retain a state of peace. This situation is
always happens to us. We hide our burdens because we are afraid to hurt
other and we do it for the good of others.
3. The Kissing
Manolito who is sixteen years old is the best cook in town. To each
dish he makes, he would whisper endearments starting with the
ingredients pre-cooked and on the whole dish-cooked.
Employed in the service of Don Miguel, he is told one day to put the
cooked dishes near the portrait of Clarita, the Don's daughter, who
has died long ago. The portrait of Clarita is so beautiful that it moves
him and Manolito could not suppress his desire to kiss it. Just as he
bends down, the Don catches him, strikes him with his fists, and
immediately asks him to leave.
Heartbroken, but still not giving up, Manolito decides to try kissing
her again. Besides kissing her, he wishes for her to taste his inupak.
He is proud of his cooking because of its taste. He also wants to look for
the dish that could make the dead come alive. As he had said, to love
and to cook were the two things he did best. This story is all about not

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giving up no matter how sad and down things may get. Manolito is
determined to do what his heart moves him to do.
The concept that I can find is that these stories contain the theme of
sadness. All these stories have some kind of sad moment in them. For
example, in the first story which is entitled Colours. The man fails to
admit his true feelings to the woman closing the possibility of them to be
together and it also makes the man suffer inside because everyone knows
how much it hurts not to be able to say what you really feel. This is
definitely a sad moment for me when I read it.
The second story is full of sad moments. The title itself give away the
fact that this is a very sad story. The title of the story is The Sadness
Collector. Basically my favorite part of this story is the story inside it. The
story of the Big Lady that collects sadness. It is a good story and it really
seemed like a legitimate story to me. The sad parts in this story is when
Rica draws herself having a stomach that increases in size every day
implying to the reader that Ricas sadness grows everyday which made
me quite sad thinking about it. And the part where Ricas dad comes home
drunk making him unable to hide what he truly feels and therefore making
him say all those bad things he thinks of his wife shocking and scaring
Rica. Honestly, it was not hard for me to imagine that moment.
The third story is about passion behind a sad tone. This story still has a
sad moment in it. The title is The Kissing. The sad part in this story is the
fact that the daughter of Manolitos boss has passed away and her picture
still moves Manolito. She is so beautiful that when Manolito sees it, he
cannot stop himself from kissing her. He was not able to kiss it the first
time because his boss stops him before he can do it but that does not stop
him. He vows to try again and he even wants to make a dish that will bring
back the dead which is sad which at the same time is noble and inspiring.