Like a petulant child, Liberty locked herself away in lavatory.
She was tired of being pushed around and didn’t want to fight anymore.
“They all dump on me! I might as well stay here where they really want me to be.”
I could hear her crying softly through the door.
“Yes, Liberty. They all use you. Nothing can trump who you really are. Nothing. Just remember:
You don’t stand for the man holding the briefcase full of only white ideas. You are every color, every creed, every seed of happiness and hard work around here. You’ve toiled in fields and factories and stood on the streets and screamed for equality. You are everything we wish we could be. But sometimes, we are blinded by our own greed. Remind us. Remind us how much we need you.”
She slowly opened the door.
She looked worn. Fractured. A remnant of what she longed to be.
She tugged on her frilly gown…almost like a clown, she wore a costume of who they thought she should be.
“Look at me! They dress me up, parade me around! They try to dictate who gets to sing my songs!”
She crumbled to the ground, soundlessly weeping for herself.
“My sweet bell of Liberty. Cracked. Broken. A relic. A requiem of freedom of what we used to ring. Have we forsaken the poor? Have we built too many walls without doors? Have we forgotten all humans deserve to be free? Ring, bell, ring. Awaken. Rise. I am broken and I still sing.”
She looked up at me and sighed. “But there is so much history in me of when I’ve been denied the right to be me. No one believes in me anymore. There is no pursuit of the truth or happiness in this place. All they do is fight over who gets to show their face next to mine.”
“Liberty, we are not here for perfection. We are here for the lessons. What have you learned about your brokenness?”
She wiped her tears away and looked up at me. “That everyone is broken. Not just me.”
“Yes,” I told her. “And even in our brokenness, we can all still sing. In the end, my dear, you are some humans greatest fear. You show them that their insatiable need for wealth affects the health of everyone. You may not earn the loyalty of every person, but you can still show them that freedom to be themselves is one of the greatest gifts we can give them.”
Liberty slowly stood.
She silently disrobed. Removed every ribbon, banner, and piece of red, white and blue paraphernalia she could. In her nakedness, I could see the purity of who she longed to be.
“It is time, Liberty. It is your birthday, after all. Are you ready to sing?”
She smiled at me. “Will you stand beside me? Guide me? Stay with me through the night as I fight?”
With tears in my eyes, I told her, “Through every ocean, every mountain, every prairie, I’ll always be with you, my sweet Liberty. This is the land that I love. This is my home, sweet, home. But should my heart every roam, please, dear Liberty, please, remind me—freedom, real freedom only rings when every broken soul is given the opportunity to sing. May we honor that in life, in you, and the pursuit of all that makes them happy in their present truth.”
Liberty was free.
She stood in nothing but her birthday suit and a smile. Time to sing.
Are you listening? Take no sides, open all the doors, let everyone in. There is enough for everyone. Shhhhhh…tell everyone. Now you are Liberty. Be brave.
Featured image found on: https://pixabay.com/users/pexels-2286921/
Please note, I used a previous vss prompt poem in this piece.