Langston Hughes’s iconic poem “Harlem” has been on my mind these days as so many dreams are being put on hold. Both the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and this year’s Boston Marathon have been officially postponed along with countless weddings, vacations, and milestones we’ve all been planning and dreaming about for months. It’s natural to feel disappointment with these losses, but professional runner Emily Sisson reminds us that many of our “dreams are not cancelled, we just have to wait a little longer to chase them.”
Harlem by Langston Hughes
What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up
Like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore–
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over–
like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?
Click here to hear Langston Hughes read “Harlem. “
What’s been happening to your deferred dreams? What dreams – old or new – will you chase when COVID-19 is behind us? (If you’d like to, you can share in the comments section below.)
“Harlem” by Langston Hughes, from The Collected Works of Langston Hughes. 2002 Copyrighted material used for educational or therapeutic purposes
Photo: Langston Hughes at home. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)