Langston Hughes

Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.

I chose this poem because of its simplicity yet deep life lesson. Dreams are something everyone has and when you cannot make those dreams come true, it seems like you have lost your purpose and are stunted in your growth. It is like a fish without water, or a bird with broken wings as Hughes describes. It is the consuming feeling of hopelessness when everything you desire and envision for yourself fails to manifest. It is the part of life everyone tells you to be ready for but never what to do when it comes. I feel it is the forced redirection of reality, when you “fail” or when your dreams don’t come true, remember that life is a barren field frozen with snow, and when that snow melts, you’ll be able to grow. There is beauty and teaching in every life experience, you should not let circumstances make or break you because tomorrow will be another opportunity to achieve all that you hope and dream. I feel Hughes intended to illustrate the emotions we feel when things don’t go our way, the urge to quit, but subtly highlights the importance of patience, telling readers to hold fast to dreams, be patient, don’t lose sight, in due time things will unfold. This is something I have to remind myself of often because I find myself getting stressed or anxious about the future and achieving certain goals and dreams instead of appreciating the present and trusting the path that I am on, while giving myself grace.

One thought on “Dreams

  1. Inmaculada Zanoguera Garcias

    Dear Lia,

    I’m a Humanities Alliance fellow, today reading through all of your posts, and I am so inspired. I think your words encapsulate the spirit of Hughes’ poem very powerfully. Both your post and the poem uplifted me, and, as you said, it’s the simplicity of what it means to hold on to hope that makes this message so impactful. Thank you for your reflection!

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