"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12
We've all had longings or yearnings during our lives, especially when we were young. Having the whole world before us, we could dream about what could be. But, there's another sort of yearning which we see in three female characters (is it always the women who dream?)
Young Cosette dreams of a better life, free from bondage. She longs for her mother's touch.
"There is a lady all in white
Holds me and sings a lullaby
She's nice to see
And she's soft to touch
She says, 'Cosette, I love you very much.'
I know a place where no one's lost
I know a place where no one cries
Crying at all is not allowed
Not in my castle on a cloud."
Fontaine also yearns for love. A man who will love her for herself, not for what she can give him. She expresses that longing in the well-known song:
I Dreamed a Dream
"I dreamed a dream in time gone by
When hope was high
And life worth living
I dreamed that love would never die
I dreamed that God would be forgiving.
I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I'm living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed
The dream I dreamed."
Eponine yearned for a different sort of life. A normal life. A life with Marius. Of course, they are worlds apart, but just for a moment, she believes in her dreams.
". . . On my own
Pretending he's beside me.
All alone I walk with him till morning. . .
And I know it's only in my mind
That I'm talking to myself and not to him
And although I know that he is blind
Still I say there's a way for us. . .
But everyday I'm learning
All my life I've only been pretending
Without me his world will go on turning
A world that's full of happiness that I have never known. . . "
Here is the "On My Own" performance:
Did you know that God knows and cares so much, that He keeps track of our tears?
You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? Psalms 56:8