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I think all of the characters are looking for something more. Amanda dreams of her past and of her daughter's future, but seems unwilling to recognize the painful harsh realities of the present. Laura dreams of breaking out of her isolation. Tom is an aspiring poet. Jim is the long-awaited gentleman caller for Laura - and the supposed prospect for her matrimony. He is outgoing, enthusiastic, and believes in self-improvement. He kisses Laura and raises her hopes that they might be together, before he finally reveals to her that he is engaged. Tom describes him as a person more connected to the real world than any of the other characters, but Jim is also a symbol for the "expected something that we live for."