express yourself
Jun 06
Kiran's picture

American Dream

American Dream

By: Kiran Waqar and Hawa Adam

Singer: Lena Ginawi

♫...Oh say can you see, by the dawn's early light...♫

H - America, the golden brick road to success. A place they had seen on TV screens, books and magazines.
K- Just the thought made their heart swell. They saw Americans whose eyes glittered with passion, whose souls were filled with hope of the future. They wanted that.
H- It was a place where their children's children could reach for the sky where they could reach for the sky.
K- A place where they were told to shoot for the moon so they would land among the stars. A place where the rags to riches story was as common as their veins which bled red, white and blue.
H- Where anything could happen regardless of race, sexuality or creed. America was their ticket to equality, opportunity, and liberty. It was the promise land!
They wanted to be Americans  

And they fought with every tooth and nail

K-  Just to get here
H- Just to set foot on American soil
K- To walk the grounds that paved the way to clean water
H- Education
K- A home
With a white picket fence
K- The place that was the stuff of legends.
H- Nothing could convince them that these legends were just myths
*Lena comes in again*
K- That the American dream was just a spark that would never become a flame
H- How could they have known that America would greet them with lower wages, angry
stares and hateful words?
K- with an obstacle at every turn
H- Despite all of this, our parents still believed
K- So they passed on the dream like a family heirloom passed from
generation
to generation
To generation

*pause*
To us 
Now they're fighting for the future of their children
So they push and push and push

K- For the next CEO
H- For the next president
K- For the star doctor
H- For the mother who could pay her rent
K- For them to find the secret key to the American dream
H- The one they were told they would get if they worked harder
K- longer
H- and stronger
*breathe*
We are those children
K- The ones who have to become the next CEO
H- The next president
K- The star doctor
H- The mother who could pay her rent
K- We live our lives with the pressure of a thousand tons of bricks
H- slowly crushing us with every breath
K- every project
H- club
Expectations
H- We have to succeed for ourselves and for them
K- While having societal and individual pressures closing in on us
We are becoming claustrophobic
H- we reach out for help with a confused shrug for an answer
K- they never went to the schools we go to now
H- Never experienced the emotions we feel now
K- Never lost their culture in the stereotypical girl
H- OMG
K - LOL
H- That’s so fetch
K- They never had to navigate two worlds in one body
H- Drowning in so many identities without a single lifesaver
They never went through it ... Facts
H- They never came home to the same old attacks
K- Quit it with the poetry! Don't you know that’s no way to a doctor’s degree?
H- Why are doing so much extra stuff?
K- Now you won’t be able to focus on your grades enough
H- Why are you out so late?
K- Who’s the boy? Was it your first date?
H- And you aren’t that forgiving so I keep on giving and giving and giving to YOUR American Dream and our American nightmare

*Lena starts singing/humming again*
K- But don’t get us wrong
We love our parents
H- Who fought with every tooth and nail to get us here
K- Who have given us opportunities we wouldn’t have had
H- So don’t think we’re ungrateful to you
K- Or for that matter for our education
H- We value what we’ve been given
K- And hope to give it to the next generation
H- But where our past one has failed is not in the school system or in the parenting it's in
The American Dream

#bnv2016
#bnv2016poem

 
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About the Author: Kiran
Kiran Waqar
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