The following poem by Emma Lazarus is so fitting to the plight of the refugees that one may be misled to think she wrote it for the families like Aylan’s, the toddler whose little body was washed ashore not far from Rhodes, the Mediterranean Island the name refers to, instead of the Statue of Liberty and American immigrants.
May I remind those Xenophobic-Westerners like the Hungarian PM Viktor Orban (if I were the descendant of Atilla the Hun, I would shy away from making bigoted remarks about others)that we are all the descendants of immigrants.
The New Colossus
As if 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!”
Emma Lazarus (1849–1887)