In Cold Blood

Dream about the parrot?

related to the book of In cold blood

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Perry’s dream of the yellow parrot – which offers him salvation from the abusive nuns of his childhood, and later from other “tormenting” figures in his life – gives us reason to believe that all of his dreams (of treasure-hunting, of becoming a famous musician) are a kind of coping mechanism, a way of compensating for misfortunes he has suffered. There is a point at which Perry’s self-protecting mechanisms become a kind of self-pitying self-aggrandizement, such as when he leaves the poem for Cookie explaining why he must hurt them both by leaving her: “There’s a race of men that don’t fit in, / A race that can’t sit still; / So they break the hearts of kith and kin, / And they roam the world at will…” (98). A tension begins to emerge between Perry’s perception of himself as exceptional (even “artistic”), misunderstood, unsuited for conventional living, and the fact that others have, throughout his life, looked down on him, viewed him as inferior or inadequate.