Sunday, July 1, 2007

America For Me!

Jasia of Creative Gene posted an article and link to the Peggy Noonan piece in the Wall Street Journal entitled "On letting go: How we become American," discussing the differences in the immigrant of today versus our immigrant ancestors. It is a very thought provoking read in which I recognized members of my own family.

In the piece Ms. Noonan quotes from a patriotic poem that made its way into one of Ronald Reagan's speeches. Here is the poem in its entirety - appropriate for the 231st anniversary of America's birth.

And yes, I cry during patriotic songs, poems, and the Fourth of July Fireworks, because it's always been America for me.

America For Me
by Henry Van Dyke

'TIS fine to see the Old World and travel up and down
Among the famous palaces and cities of renown,
To admire the crumbly castles and the statues and kings
But now I think I've had enough of antiquated things.

So it's home again, and home again, America for me!
My heart is turning home again and there I long to be,
In the land of youth and freedom, beyond the ocean bars,
Where the air is full of sunlight and the flag is full of stars.

Oh, London is a man's town, there's power in the air;
And Paris is a woman's town, with flowers in her hair;
And it's sweet to dream in Venice, and it's great to study Rome;
But when it comes to living there is no place like home.

I like the German fir-woods in green battalions drilled;
I like the gardens of Versailles with flashing fountains filled;
But, oh, to take your hand, my dear, and ramble for a day
In the friendly western woodland where Nature has her sway!

I know that Europe's wonderful, yet something seems to lack!
The Past is too much with her, and the people looking back.
But the glory of the Present is to make the Future free--
We love our land for what she is and what she is to be.

Oh, it's home again, and home again, America for me!
I want a ship that's westward bound to plough the rolling sea,
To the blessed Land of Room Enough, beyond the ocean bars,
Where the air is full of sunlight and the flag is full of stars.

2 Comments:

Blogger Jasia said...

It's beautiful Maven. Thanks for sharing!

July 1, 2007 at 5:13 PM  
Blogger The footnoteMaven said...

Jasia:

You started the ball rolling with your excellent post.

As usual you are the genealogy bloggers muse, I just moved the ball around a little.

I am a sap for all things patriotic!

fM

July 1, 2007 at 5:19 PM  

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