What's In A Dream Poem Analysis

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What’s In A Dream? “Here’s to the ones who dream, foolish as they may seem. Here’s to the hearts that ache; here’s to the mess we make.” That simple chorus can be found in the song “Audition” from the 2016 film, La La Land and it speaks to the universal human struggle of pursuing a dream. Sure, many adults may shrug off their dream as childish folly, but everyone carries a dream. But what happens when those dreams are neglected? When they’re left behind alongside action figures and tutus and packed away into boxes carried to the attic to never be seen again. That is the very question Langston Hughes hopes to answer in his poem, “Harlem.” In the first line of the poem, Hughes poses the question; “What happens to a dream deferred?” Throughout the rest of the poem, he seeks to answer that question by providing a brief evolution of the death of a dream, but before the …show more content…
“Does it stink like rotten meat? / Or crust and sugar over / like a syrupy sweet?” Hughes points out how much like meat will go bad and create a intense sickening cloud unpleasant to the nose, a neglected dream, will eventually irritate and torture the dreamer until all they feel is resentment and guilt. Sam Deiner (a Genius contributor) writes to clarify the second part of the line. “This line suggests to me what happens when someone (or an entire people) in pain is coerced into a fake syrupy sweetness – eventually the painted-on smile hardens into an encrusted grimace.” Yes, a person (or a community of people such as the African American people) can pretend to be happy, but eventually, the façade will fade, and they’ll be left with regret and sadness. But, what separates the African American people from the average everyday dreamer is that they had no control over their predicament, whereas most dreamers control (at least on some level) their

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