The Forging of a Post-Dream America

post-american dream All that is real in America is time. It is seen in the supranormal distances, the unbounded canyons, the forests and eagles, and the rivers that eat away through the muddy banks, it is all so big and impressive and we live on it, not even realizing, only taking advantage. All of them have the chance to build and rape and live and it is without understanding the dinosaur bones in the ground and the hideous badlands and the frore plains, America is unlike anywhere else in the world, it is the oldest continent and surely the most wild.

If only we had lived here for ten thousand years we might feel differently, but our puny three hundred is only makes us proud and materialistic, as though we were owed this ancient land, this majesty. They have no idea! All that we’ve built will wash away and our storied pomp will fade into mediocrity, thank god we are at the end of our tract of history, perhaps that will make us realize it is nearly time to live again, and to stop hoping.

Good god, end their hope, it is pathetic and puny and repressive and irreparable. It is always there, that any of them can become president and if not president then at least rich! Their great grandfathers were lured by the same idea, the old world desire to sacrifice for their children so that they could have the reins and possibility and hope and it was truer for them than it is for us. The aristocracy is entrenched. This is only the beginning, and then maybe they will start to live as Americans and a true identity will emerge, instead of the New Yorker or the Californian or the Oregonian and state rivalry will end and with it their facile responsibilities, their fifty hour workweeks and their American Dream. The whole national identity rests on an acknowledged allusion! And yet they continue to toil and scream on their deathbeds…


By Daniel Ryan Adler

Daniel Adler writes fiction and nonfiction and is finishing his MFA at University of South Carolina.

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