AMERICUH 2018

*

We come to wonder in times like these,

Whether the founders’ vision as first conceived,

Was a light for the ages from Enlightenment’s steeple,

Or a just votive candle for the lesser-blessed people.

*

For Founding Fathers like Madison and Hamilton,

Though men of good will were inarguably masculine,

Whose unalienable rights attended the fortunes of birth,

Where color and land were measures of worth.

*

Yet believing in full,

’Twas the way God designed it,

The true order of man,

Who were they to unwind it?

*

Still, there was more to their vision,

Than even they ever saw,

As the breadth of their wisdom,

Slowly codified into law.

*

Ever-widening the definition,

Of all men being equal,

Whether by gender or race,

Eventually all became legal.

*

And though the union isn’t perfect,

Nor ever likely to be,

The struggle for inclusion,

Stretches sea to shining sea.

*

Now, after twelve score & 2,

Their conceit still flutters,

Like a flag before nations,

Flying high above others,

*

As a banner of hope,

To guide and to chasten,

But is it still viable,

Our founding declaration?

*

For our world-wide welcome,

May have come upon its limit,

What Lady Liberty once preached,

We now seek to prohibit.

*

Huddling masses in cages,

Parents separated from children,

Detention camps coming,

Hasn’t this history been written?

*

So where have they flown,

Those better angels of Lincoln,

Those hallowed guardians,

Of our secular dominion?

*

Have their flights been grounded?

Is Liberty’s lamp still alight?

Is the golden door still ajar?

Or is it only in hindsight,

*

That our best is revealed,

Our truest measure taken,

Because now by all reckoning,

Our ideals have been shaken,

*

By the polarity of our politics,

The breadth of our divide,

The overcrowding of our prisons,

The purple in our pride.

*

As if put to the test,

We have come up a bit shy,

Not the envy of nations,

But a bristling tough-guy.

*

Contemptuous of the world,

Which we helped twice to save,

As we stretched out our hand,

From this land of the brave.

*

Now that same hand’s been clenched,

And its arms have been stiffened,

While those yearning to breathe free,

Await only a prison.

*

Leaving a society in opposition,

In which fear is over-riding,

Serving the interest of those,

Who buy the deciding,

*

As adjutants to their own,

Manufactured consent,

As crises are created,

to ramp up dissent,

*

And Homeland is the banner,

That’s constantly flown,

Propaganda for the masses,

To keep them half-stoned,

*

While paying the piper,

And bearing their arms,

Voting against interest,

Blind to the harm,

*

As this Mother of Exiles,

Has been brought to such depths,

By a scurrilous solipsist,

Who never admits to missteps,

*

And causes such pain,

As he leads us astray,

Who ever thought,

It would end up this way?

*

And what say we to those,

Beneath headstones of white,

Whose full measure was given,

As the guardians of right?

*

Who must look with dismay,

From their fields of green clover,

At the venom injected,

By a blustering comb-over,

*

Wondering if this is the way,

That our Fathers foresaw,

This trumpeting of ego,

Over legacy and law,

*

And based on an ethic,

Whose only interest is in self,

E pluribus unum? Yeah, well,

You can all go eff yourselves.

*

END

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