Given that the Trump administration is interested in redefining, changing or replacing the poem on the Statue of Liberty, I thought I would take a moment and try a re-write or The New Colossus into The American Colossus. Here’s how it goes –
The American Colossus
A rusted woman of fabled fame
Stands with her back against the land
Whose promises and dreams so grand
Lie behind sunset gates; whose flame
Is the trembled flicker, and her name
Rejector of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Spies worldwide suspicion; her cold eyes command
The razor-wire wall of callous blame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your worthless serfs!” cries she,
“Give me your rich, First-class enter the door,
You gilded few, with wealth and profits, see
The riches and resources of our teeming shore.
Send these, the pampered, aristocratic to me,
Concern not over the pauper or poor.”
Given recent events in the United States, I felt it important to post the Statue of Liberty poem before it changes.
The New Colossus
by Emma Lazarus (11/2/1883)
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!”
Live life like the pinball.
Bounce off the bumpers.
Score some points.
Bounce the fuck around
Until the bumpers miss
and you fall
into the abyss.
At Tranquil Falls, deep in the glade
I rested my mental parade.
Inhaling fresh air (oh so sweet!)
Feeling the water o’er my feet
Sitting bankside under the shade.
Behold! This scene is not manmade
Where sounds of birds and leaves pervade.
I feel my soul become replete
At Tranquil Falls.
Alas I leave this scene displayed
To go back to my working trade.
Lunch break ends and I leave my seat.
Recreation is now complete
At Tranquil Falls.
Empty branches sway in the wind.
I stand to watch and comprehend.
Where are the squirrels? Did they leave?
Why no nests did the parents weave?
I look at every single bend.
The leaves are green; no fungal trend.
My thoughts follow every loose end,
Why can I not conceive
No fruits nor nests nor dividends
For as long as this tree extends.
I only see bright bark and leaves.
Sun sets with my heart on my sleeves.
My autumn chair beneath my tree
Sits outside, beckoning to me.
My tree adorned in warming hue
Beneath clear skies of calming blue.
I take a book and songs with me.
Listening to my mp3
A breeze rustles the canopy
Dancing leaves dervish down next to
My autumn chair.
After some songs, it gets chilly
Yet I can’t leave so recklessly
For I know not what I would do
Giving my abandonment to
My autumn chair.
My mother is exhibiting some of her plein aire artwork this weekend and she invited me to accompany her artwork with poetry. I am excited to be a part of the collaborative art process, particularly since I’ve fallen in love with writing rondeau poetry. It is like writing a rhyming crossword puzzle. I find the rules both engaging and challenging.
It has taken me 2 days and the next 3 posts are my poems with my mother’s accompanying artwork.