In chapter 8 of Hatchet, Brian has a number of disturbing dreams. In the first dream, his father is trying to communicate something to him yet is unable to do so. Brian tries desperately to hear what his father's trying to say, but he can't. Eventually, his old man vanishes in a fog.
In the next dream, Brian sees his friend Terry sitting on a park bench looking at a barbecue pit for what seems like an eternity. After a while, Terry puts some charcoal on the barbecue pit, pours some starter fluid on it, and manages to get a good fire going. He then looks at Brian and smiles, pointing at the fire as if to say, “See, a fire!”
Terry points a couple more times at the fire, making Brian feel ever more frustrated that he himself is unable to get a fire going.
Both of these dreams are vital to the plot as they show that Brian, despite being stuck in the wilderness, is still focused on himself and his troubles rather than the natural world around him.
In due course, Brian will communicate and engage more deeply with the environment, developing in the process a connection with nature. But for now, he's preoccupied with himself and his problems, the problems he left behind at home and the problems he has to deal with out in the wilderness.