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2007

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Lady in the Harbor
Tony Brown

  she is just the Statue of Liberty to us
she doesn't have a name of her own

  we stole her name
  when she entered the harbor

  no "I am..."
  for her

  no sense of herself
  to fall back on

  so many names were stolen
  from so many

  but names
  what do they matter

  the Statue of Liberty
  was born to watch over

  things other than identity
  wasn't she

  there are times when she wishes
  she could run the streets of New York City

  calling out for the ghosts of those she let pass
  saying "Maria Gunther Luisa Michael

  I remember who you were
  when we met"

  hoping one would turn
  and say

  "yes I remember you
  with your lamp and your crown

  your name was..."

  she thinks this way
   whenever the pressure of being forgotten

  becomes too much
  to hold in silence

  she wants to lie down and sleep
  one good night's rest might help her remember

  she thinks she might have been French
  before we turned her turned into something new

  she never wanted to be iconic
  if it meant forgetting who she was