The story begins with a narrator leaning back on a chair, looking at a woman whose hand is on an oil lamp. They look at each other for a few minutes, and then the narrator says, ‘‘Eyes of a blue dog,’’ which she repeats, saying she will never forget that and has written it everywhere. Walking to a dressing table, the woman looks at the narrator in the mirror and powders her nose before returning to the lamp and commenting that she is afraid someone is dreaming about the room, revealing her secrets. They each comment on the cold, and the woman returns to the dressing table where, despite the fact that he has turned his back to her, the narrator can tell what she is doing. He tells her that he can see her, and the woman says that this is impossible.
With the narrator facing her again, the woman asks him to do something about the cold, and she begins to undress. The narrator tells her he had always wanted to see her like that. Naked, the woman discusses how sometimes she thinks that they are both made of metal, and she tells him that if they ever find each other in real life, to put his ear on her ribs and hear her echoing. She says that her life has been dedicated to finding the narrator in reality, recognizing him with the phrase ‘‘Eyes of a blue dog,’’ and she describes all of the different places she has uttered and written the phrase in order to find him.
The narrator says that everyday he tries to remember the phrase but that he always forgets it. She tells him she wishes he could at least remember the city in which she has been writing it, and he tells her that he would like to touch her. She asks for a cigarette and says that she wonders why she cannot remember where she wrote the phrase, musing that sometimes she thinks that she may merely have dreamed that she wrote it everywhere. He walks over to give her the cigarette and says that if he could only remember the phrase tomorrow, he could find her. She tells him that the cigarette is warming her up, and he says that he is glad, because it frightens him to see her trembling.
After mentioning that they have been seeing each other this way for several years and that each meeting ends when they hear the drop of a spoon in the morning, the narrator remembers the first time he asked her who she was. She had replied that she did not remember, and they had realized that they had met in previous dreams. The narrator then repeats that he would like to touch her, and she tells him that he would ruin everything. He insists that it does not matter, but she says that when he wakes up he will have forgotten, and she stays behind the lamp.
The narrator tells the woman that it is already dawning, and he takes the doorknob in his hand. The woman tells him not to open the door because the hallway is full of difficult dreams, but the narrator opens the door halfway and smells ‘‘vegetable earth, damp fields,’’ telling her that he does not think there is a hallway there. She says this is because there is a woman outside dreaming about the country, and the narrator tells her that he has to leave in order to wake up. The wind and the smells cease, and the narrator tells the woman that he will recognize her tomorrow from their phrase. She tells him with a sad smile that he will not remember anything and puts her hands back over the lamp, saying, ‘‘You’re the only man who doesn’t remember anything of what he’s dreamed after he wakes up.’’