Strenuous Dreams

"One of us is free and has experienced things that he never knew and dreamed about as a kid." (page xi)

Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes' "A Dream Deferred", is a poem about how dreams may wither away if forgotten about, or take a turn for the worst. In the introduction of The Other Wes Moore we learn that one child named Wes Moore gets to live a dream, while the other loses hope in his dreams and becomes a criminal. A Dream Deferred is much like the criminal's story, and relates to how his dreams dried up, "like a raisin in the sun".

On page 17, the author begins to talk about the other Wes Moore's story, and how his mother couldn't continue her schooling as she had hoped she may. "Mary was the first in her family to even begin college." It reads. This being said, the other Wes Moore's family is not too fortunate. Mary, the criminal's mother, had tried to pursue her longtime dream of completing her bachelor's, when the grant that was going to allow her to do so was denied, causing her grasp on the dream to fade. In A Dream Deferred it talks about what a dream could do when it is lost and forgotten about. Mary may feel that her dream "sags like a heavy load" because she lives only five miles away from the university, causing her to constantly have to feel the weight of the chance she once had.

Some people may argue that A Dream Deferred refers to when you set a dream aside, rather than when a dream is out of your hands and unable to be controlled, and in some areas they may be correct. The title means a dream put off or set aside, but the poem means much more than just that. It talks about how dreams fester and weigh you down, and that can happen when dreams get a bit uncontrollable as well. In The Other Wes Moore on page 8, the author talks about his mother and how she came to The United States at the age of three, and how his grandfather moved their family to America to pursue his dream of a theology degree from an American school. Wes's mother was fortunate enough to be able to achieve her dreams and goals, unlike the other Wes Moore's mom with her college grant being denied. This shows us that dreams are not as easily achievable as we hope them to be.

The author Wes Moore wrote The Other Wes Moore to inform people of what taking a wrong path may do to someone's entire life, and help people to see that if they follow their dreams and work hard to get them, their life will turn out as great as they'd make it to be. Dreams though, may be more difficult to achieve for those whom are unfortunate and do not have the motivation and incentives to keep on trying as best they can. This may cause someone to give up on a dream and allow it to fester and wallow around until it is gotten rid of completely. Dreams may be difficult to achieve, but you should never stop giving up on them, for it may change your life in the end.