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Welcome to the Arden Theatre Company blog, where we share behind-the-scenes stories and current happenings with you. You will hear from the Arden staff as well as actors and other visiting artists, and we hope to hear from you, too. If you have an idea for a topic, please post a comment about it. We can't wait to hear what you think!

To my wife Ni’Teesha
By Zachery Sminkey 

We sat and watched A Raisin in the Sun

Ruth announced what they fear is we’ll marry

At first I’m glad that now those times are done

More I think, the more my thoughts get dreary.

I hold my loves black hand in my white palm

I suppose what they had feared has come true

Since those that see us most times are calm

Does this mean that racism is now through?

People do not strike, scream, stare but they glance

Not overt they do it so we can’t see

They’ll be called racist they can’t take that chance

Mom even told Ni’ in secret don’t wed me.

Some may still fight us; this is not their life

Ni’Teesha, you will always be my wife

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

Dianna Dragonetti

(Response to Harlem by Langston Hughes)

 

What happens to a dream deferred?

Can I describe with simply words

The intangible loss that must occur

When aspiration is demurred?

 

Does it become an orphaned child,

Unsung and shy–seen but unheard,

Or does it seek another’s wiles,

And take off, flitting, like a bird?

 

Does it disperse like urban soot,

Settling as grime on stagnant waters,

Or does it languish, underfoot,

Like petals, flora’s fallen daughters?

 

Does it burn and rise from the ash anew,

Or evaporate with morning’s dew?

Does it waft and fade like dimming light,

Or go, screaming, into the night?

 

But all comparisons aside,

Why must we have our dreams denied?

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

As Dreams Kill – A Play
By Patrick Kelley

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

By Karem  Mathiang
A poem from Momma’s perspective about her plant.

I’ve always wanted a garden, but I guess that’s asking for too much.

So instead I bought a seed, and it reminded me of how someone once told me that if you gave a plant a name it’ll learn to respond. And I don’t know if that’s true and I don’t really care if it is because my mother would always say that everyone needs something to believe in.

So I wonder if I told my plant to grow, would it resemble the picture that is painted in my dreams. Will it bare the weight of the crumbling world around me .

Will it stand tall on days when I forget what ambition looks like. Will it remind me that it doesn’t matter how thick the soil is, as long as you know where your roots are…

Or, will it ever actually grow?

If I called it Walter, will it remind me of the man that I’ve lost, if I wished hard enough will it grow large enough to shatter the floors of heaven so Walter Lee can  climb down and touch the stars that he couldn’t reach when he was alive will it ever be more than a dream deferred.

Maybe this plant will make up for all the lost moments…or maybe, maybe I’m asking for too much again.

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

Dreams Deferred
By Vanessa Conde 

A dream is extremely fragile

It can be torn apart

It can shatter and fall

Or it can be a new start

 

You have to know how to express it

Because you can’t forget about a goal,

You can suppress it in your memory

But deep down it’ll be found in your soul

 

A dream deferred can’t be forgotten

It’s just locked up somewhere

We say we’ll initiate tomorrow

But we don’t realize if we put it off, we’ll get nowhere

 

A raisin in the sun is an example

If you take all their dreams that were dreamed

You’ll see they were put off, >case

And not one of them showed or gleamed

 

In their attempt to rise unto glory

A thing or two slipped

They let their dreams fade

Once they accidently tripped

 

That’s what happens to us too

We put aside what we want so badly

In fear it’ll never be accomplished

But as we pretend and nod gladly,

 

We don’t realize if we don’t try we won’t succeed

But not trying gives us a reason to fail

But our dreams don’t disappear

Due to the fact that they leave a trail

 

No matter how far we run to hide from it

It’ll always be by our side

It’ll follow us till the day we die

Unless we had really tried

 

Our dreams go in a little box

Locked up and saved for ourselves

They’re not for the world to see

And are put on the shelves

 

Our dreams hover around us

And shout till they are recognized

But we look past them

So we aren’t agonized

 

Our dreams are swept under the carpet

They accumulate particles of dust

And we leave them there hidden from the eye of company

Because we’re unsure of whom we can trust

 

There are those who pretend they don’t dream

Due to their countless insecurity

They refuse to reveal their wishes

And leave us with curiosity

 

I guess we can’t truly say what happens to dreams deferred

It’s different for everyone

It’s really a mystery whether we like it or not

It depends if the battle of dreaming is lost or won

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

 

 

Follow Your Dream
By David Kurkowski

You can also listen to this song on YouTube 

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

The Dreamer
By Mini Racker

Desire, such a feathery angel,
deserts the sarcophagus of my body.
I believed in the thing that no one sees.
One of water and writhing, I had waited.
One of lace and fire, I withdrew.

The creek tempted me that dwindling summer night,
that last August, when the leaves sung almost inaudibly,
turning the seasons,
and nor’easters dampened the earth
and the lapping of the water tampering with my heartbeat
like moss does with elm roots,
irrevocably, at its own pace.

My legs overhanging the bank, I weep
for the soft plop of the rain on the mud, pearls bursting
with what dignity.
Drops shimmering through the air, I’m
simmering here, simmering like something that never was, that
never will be—What if
I disappeared like the fishes,
burrowing their lips into the riverbed?

Without reverie, there is nothing but the brook and the rocks
And the blurred keening stars.
And some lost dream like time joint back on itself.
And a dim infinity of days ahead, billowing.

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

By Vladimir Castillo

You can also watch this video on YouTube.

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

By Lisette Vasquez

Intro: A dream deferred cannot be ignored for long. A dream is what motivates us to live, it gives meaning to life. A dream can only be changed or modified but never eradicated. Therefore, if an individual has no dream then that person has nothing to live for. My story outlines the dream of an immigrant family, a dream most of us might have; the American dream.

 

The first thing you should know about me is my name: Casey Vasquez. I am a young girl I am only fourteen but I had to become an adult before any of the American girls at my school. My family is foreign we are Mexican but my little brother and I were lucky enough to be born in the United States the land of freedom and opportunity. However, for illegal immigrant parents like ours, we weren’t living the American life every one craves for. My parents are hardworking, honest people. Everyday it breaks my heart to see them come from work tired, worn out, and hopeless. Everyday I ask myself, “Is this freedom?” Everyday I look in the mirror and see nothing. Everyday I miss the family I left behind in Mexico.

I can still recall the moment I said goodbye. My little brother, Irving, was in the car and I alone had to face the tears of my family. I hugged my grandfather and said goodbye not knowing that was the last goodbye I would ever say to him. My aunt did something that day that I would never forget. She pulled me aside and asked me for a favor. “Never forget your family. Never forget your country always remember where you are from.” I got into the car and drove off but I did not look back, I could not look back I had to keep moving forward and leave my home, my family, and poverty. I had to leave it all behind me and become something better no matter what I had to sacrifice. I felt a tear roll down my cheek and I slowly began to sob. “Are you okay Casey?” Irving asked me.

“I’m okay Irving,” I responded “I just don’t like leaving home.”

But leaving home is what I had to do. I had to sacrifice my culture to pursue my dream; to become a doctor. I got up and went to the bathroom to get dressed for school. I looked in the mirror as I do everyday and see what I always see; nothing. Dreams only bring up hope and eventually you’ll crash and burn you if you believe in them. I come from an immigrant family we weren’t allowed to dream we had other things to worry about. I wasn’t even sure why I kept trying to be a good student. I just knew I had to at least try be something better. I worked hard everyday and high school seemed to pass by very quickly. I began to feel as though I could actually reach my goal and achieve my dreams but I would always cast away such thoughts.

My senior year of high school was a year I would never forget. I had helped my parents to receive their citizenship and we were no longer unhappy. Maybe there was still hope. Maybe I could continue to dream and make my dreams a reality. It was a glorious day the day that I got accepted into medical school. I felt as though a great weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. My parents hugged me with tears in their eyes and began to tell me how proud they were of me. I felt so happy and we all knew from that instant that our lives would change. Graduation day was a beautiful sunny morning. I was anxiously waiting for my name to be called so that I could walk up and receive my certificate. When I did I looked at the crowd and saw my family. Irving had grown so much and at that moment I realized that I could make a difference in his life. I could help him make his dreams a reality. I noticed my parents were carrying some suitcases which I found odd. After the ceremony ended I walked over to them to discover that we would be going to Mexico that same day during the whole summer. I was so happy at the thought that I would be able to return that I cried. My tears rolled down my face and onto my dress. I got into the car and immediately remembered that there was something I wanted to do before we departed. My parents agreed to drive back to the house. I walked in thinking about how many memories I had made here. Several thoughts were running through my mind and I found myself in the bathroom. I decided to go look at the mirror and I looked at my reflection. Not only did I see that but I also saw something else; success.

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

We Are Such Stuff
By Evan Meyer

Waking in the morning,
The dream you had in the night
Tarries – within your grasp
But oh so fragile and immaterial.

Lie still and capture the memory
Rehearse each image and thought
Prompt them from potential to actuality
And you may be able to arise
Without losing the play, the thing.

But fail to gently gather in
That wisp of smoke
And your first motion
In another direction
Sends it flying for the wings.

Oh, I had such a dream last night
But the curtain has fallen
And there will be no encore.

This is a finalist in our A Raisin in the Sun Creative Response Contest. From April 17-19 you can visit our Facebook page to vote for this entry to win our grand prize!

©2009 Arden Theatre Company, 40 N. 2nd St., Philadelphia, PA 19106. For tickets, call 215.922.1122.
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