The fictional works of Dos Passos present a plethora of American slang. Street talk is an essential components of his most popular masterworks: Manhattan Transfer, U.S.A., and Three Soldiers. Just off the top of my head, I can think of a couple expressions from his books. “Hell of a note” was evidently a conversational hallmark in certain circles in the 1930s. Also, “Before the whole thing goes belly up” is something I remember well from U.S.A. I suspect that my grandfather was surrounded and saturated by slang during his WWI service.
Dos Passos had a keen ear for slang and all facets of common speech. One need look no further than Shakespeare–or for a contemporary example, David Mamet–to find examples of slang that, with a clever pen, becomes poetry.