I stand here for generations watching

the tired the poor the huddled masses

pretending to look beyond them,

into some ideal time when all learn

the need for the progress of humanity,

the need to include, accept, encompass.


Its not that I don’t think about those grand ideals,

but what I really watch daily is the island –

developing slowly to transcend

even my wildest dreams of liberty,

the maturing, collective knowledge

of the human mind in its service.


Buildings grow – to accommodate,

unite nations. The World Trade Center!

The name alone was enough to give me reason

for standing here, waiting, all these years.


I see all the setbacks too, the tragedies,

the mistakes, the overwhelming struggles

of people too close to each other,

people needing to be free

by suppressing someone else.


But today, watching

all the wonders of civilization


to destroy themselves and others,

is the worst of my life.


I will require

great and steady vision

to learn to see