The New Colossus, Now Grown Old

Like Lazarus awaiting a new day to dawn
to awaken him from his darkened crypt,
the Mother of Exiles sleeps, now withdrawn
into dreams; shut-eyed, silent, hard-lipped.
She does not speak, nor smile, and her fire dims
while all around her sound the self-righteous hymns
of spoiled children clutching at her rusted gown,
climbing upward to steal her weathered crown,
screaming, “I am the ruler of the Land of the Free!”
and seeking to bind with chains all they see.
And still their Mother sleeps where she stands,
worn by birthing pangs, Caesarean operations,
and dreaming of grateful children from other lands;
children unspoilt in their third-world nations.

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