This excerpt Richard Harter Fogle's from Hawthorne's Fiction: The Light
and the Dark, suggests to us that Brand's expression of his isolation may
also be a warning to other would-be seekers.
The laugh tolls out for the last time in the dreams of the lime-burner and his son-Brand's final knell, filled with irony and irreconcilable defiance. The implications of this culminating outburst borrow power and spaciousness from the recurring waves of wild sound which are infrequent but regular and emphatic throughout the tale. (48)
(courtesy of University of Oklahoma Press)