Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The New Colossus

Ever since I was a little girl I loved reading books and biographies about people who came to America in search of a new life. I also loved Emma Lazarus' poem and used to know it by heart.

I was a somewhat dramatic child and some of the stories I read about immigrants first memories of America would move me to tears.

We didn't get to walk on the island, we only took a ferry out. But it was still amazing to see her after all these years.

Maybe next trip.

The New Colossus
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

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