Dandelion Wine
Ray Bradbury
Contributed by Loretta Ingwersen
Chapter 6
Summary

Inspired by Tom’s statistics, Douglas explains to his brother that summer is split between things done every summer, and things done for the first time. When Tom asks for examples of the latter, Douglas cites his sudden awareness of being alive. On a yellow nickel tablet, he makes two lists of categories: Rites and Ceremonies, then Discoveries and Revelations. As they start on their tabulation of summer, they discuss the dandelion wine ritual, and how grownups and kids fight because they’re different races. They agree to update this list as events occur, and Tom immediately has a statistic: that night is made up of the shadows of the world’s five billion trees crawling into the air.

Analysis

This list-keeping is another metafictive gesture in the book: like the dandelion wine, it is a way to record and store a part of the summer of 1928. In a way, Douglas and Tom also serve as a Greek chorus for the stories in the novel: where they aren’t central characters, these interlude chapters provide a chance for their perspective to inform those events.

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