A Poem for Your Independence Day

Jun 30, 2016 | Posted by the IEW Blog Team

Have you and your students memorized any poetry of late? Perhaps you're working your way through Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization and looking for the perfect poem for your personal selection at the end of a level. This beautiful piece from the 1800s speaks of the first sight that many of our immigrant forebears saw when they arrived in the United States, longing for the freedom that we celebrate this Independence Day. If any of your students are a quick study, they might even be able to have it ready to recite at your family gathering this Fourth of July.


by Emma Lazarus (1883)

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!”


Live Chat with IEW