Freedom without “Freedom”

So…I’m a little behind on my posting, so I’m going to find a way to double post.  We’ll see how it goes.

Anyway, my Juniors were given the assignment to write a poem using a metaphor to represent freedom.  That is, they were to write a poem about freedom but not use the actual word freedom.  This was intended to make them try and picture freedom in a more concrete way.  Here’s my attempt.


A Fragment of Liberty


I woke up in a wilderness of stone,

And around me were crooked and narrow paths

Where flint tore the heels of uncounted souls.

The people did not see me.  They toiled in small caves;

Their forge fires glowed in the twilight.

Long chains manacled them to stakes,

And they were making more links.


I then came to

The great gate at the edge of a golden prairie.

The grasses waved and shimmered in the wind.

Sails of white clouds hung in the impossibly blue

Dome of the sky.  Far off, too far to clearly see,

A great lighthouse stood on the shore

Of a mighty sea.

White caps glittered there, and closer still

A herd of buffalo, their shaggy humps moving

From the round horizon and over the rolling hills

Made distant thunder.


The gate was only a gap with a grid of

Iron rails over a trench

Above me hung seven wrought letters.

A sign in red gave CAUTION.

Avoid traps, sinks, and floods.

The management is not responsible for lost items.

There are no guarantees.


The fence that started there stretched

Left and right

Straight as a string and long as forever.


Along the fence-line travelers has beaten down

The verge into a hard, gray path.

Along this wide road someone had built

Small shelters, shacks of sod and planks.

They had a certain symmetry, a charm,


But not for me.


Out there, where the great distance made vision indistinct,

I saw what could have been giants.

They were people.


They moved as if they were sliding on ice.

They were quick, and they twinkled,

And though the path to shelter was easy

I could not resist the people.

I struck out, and the path I took

Was no path at all,

And no path was left behind me.

No path was left behind.

About evamccollaum

I am a starting publisher who needs the help of younger people to successfully use social networking. I continuously search for good stories and good writers.
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