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WILLY: Like a young god. Hercules—something like that. And the sun, the sun all around him. Remember how he waved to me? Right up from the field with the representatives of three colleges standing by? And the buyers I brought, and the cheers when he came out—Loman, Loman, Loman! God Almighty, he’ll be great yet. A star like that, magnificent, can never really fade away. (Act 1)
Willy clings to memories of the distant past to find hope for the future. What's interesting is that we see and hear of these past events through Willy's distorted lens. There's really no telling if anything was ever as wonderful as he paints it.
LINDA: Biff was very changed this morning. His whole attitude seemed to be hopeful. He couldn’t wait to get down town to see Oliver.
WILLY: He’s heading for a change. There’s no question. There simply are certain men who take longer to get solidified. How did he dress? (Act 2)
Linda and Willy cling to even the slightest indication of change as definite proof of a better future to come. It's really sad that all their dream and hopes for themselves and their children have come down to this.
WILLY: You wait, kid, before it’s all over we’re gonna get a little place out in the country, and I’ll raise some vegetables, a couple of chickens…
LINDA: You’ll do it yet, dear. (Act 2)
Despite all evidence to the contrary, Willy maintains that they will escape their current financial situation and create something new. We wonder, though, if Linda is as delusional as her husband. Does she really believe that there is a house in the country in the future?