Today’s writing prompt will help us commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Keep reading to see the full prompt and my completed version of it.
Today’s Writing Prompt: I Have a Dream
Write a scene about a character who is in the crowd watching Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. For inspiration, you should watch YouTube videos of the speech live, and read the full transcript of “I Have a Dream” online.
Completed Version of Today’s Writing Prompt
I Have the Same Dream, by K.E. Creighton
Paul’s older brother, Pat, had insisted that he come with him to DC today and Paul still wasn’t sure why. What was he expected to do within a crowd of thousands and thousands of people anyway, besides get lost or bumped in the ribs too many times? Pat knew he hated crowds, regardless of why they were formed, but promised to share the keys to his new Corvette every Friday for a year, so Paul enthusiastically agreed. He just started his last year of high school, so was not above agreeing to this bribe.
As they waded through the sea of people past the Washington Monument Paul was glad it was a somewhat cool summer day and that all he could hear was laughter and excited voices anticipating… a reverend’s speech? Paul and his family (including Pat) were not religious, not really. Though they, of course, would never tell a soul back in their own town. But before he could complain to his brother about being brought here under false pretenses to listen to a sermon of some sort, he heard a commanding voice come over the microphone, “Five score years ago, a great American…”
Paul and Pat stopped walking and stood next to the reflecting pool. There were a few cheers in the crowd while the reverend spoke but after a moment, the crowd grew calm, still, and silent. You could have heard a pin drop on the lawn. Paul saw an elderly woman in front of him pat a younger man’s hand as that hand held her upright. She saw grown men of all ages and clothing styles staring ahead with tears glistening in their eyes, some with hopeful expressions on their faces. One man was leaning on the wooden stick of a poster he had been holding up a few seconds ago as it sat upside down on the grass now. And he could see a few women with their attention rapt in deep concentration to the reverend’s words. Some people closed their eyes as if they were praying.
When the speech ended, the crowd reanimated with cheers and whistles. Then Paul turned to his brother and said, “Now I get why you brought me here. I have the same dream.” Then, after that moment, he and his brother spent the rest of the day wading through the crowd shaking hands, joining in, and making plans. He knew that this was the first day of the rest of their lives.
[All Rights Reserved by K.E. Creighton and Creighton’s Compositions LLC. The above work is a piece of fiction. All names and locations referred to are the product of the author’s imagination and are used entirely for fictional purposes. Any similarities to real-life persons or places are purely coincidental.]
Notes on Completing this Writing Prompt
Please, watch the entire “I Have a Dream” speech before writing today. It is less than twenty minutes. And there’s no doubt that it will influence your writing in a profound way.