Living in the “hood”

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?
I was pointed to this poem while reading a book which is about a community and church that I am a guest of for the summer.   Mr. Hughes grasps the decay that abounds where I temporarily reside.  Decay, it’s everywhere.  From the dope dealers on the corner to the couple down the street that argues over the cost of weed, moral decay pervades.  Yet, in the midst of such decay, there is life.  Houses are rebuilt.  Struggling addicts, like myself, find needed help and support.  There are cracks in the sidewalks and flowers grow between them.

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