What a week this has been here in the United States, which I have slowly learned is a country of contradictions.
This is a nation of inspiration, but also of disappointment. A nation of enlightenment, but also of ignorance. A nation of hope, but also of despair.
The below poem, written in 1883 and later inscribed within the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty, best exemplifies the ideals of America.
“The New Colossus”
By Emma Lazarus
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!”
Today, Veterans Day, Americans honor those who have protected our ideals and freedoms. We must never let their sacrifices be in vain.
Pastimescapes is not a political blog, nor do I plan to turn it into one. However, I could not start writing typical posts again without first acknowledging what has happened.
We will need to be vigilant, and there will be a tough road ahead to maintain that worldwide welcome extended by Lady Liberty. In the midst of the struggle against darkness, we will need entertaining diversions more than ever.