Below is a poem inspired by America The Beautiful I wrote while on a road trip across the United States. I am making a short film and would like to include voices from other folks reading the poem from every state in the country. Immigrants and citizens both are welcome!
To participate email an audio recording of yourself stating your name, phone number, and a reading of all or part of the poem to . If email isn’t your thing you can also participate by calling and leaving a voice message with the same details and a reading. For instructions on how to record and share audio using an iPhone click here, or an Android device here.
By emailing your audio or leaving a voice message you consent to having your voice included in the piece and agree that you are 18 years of age or older. Phone numbers will only be used if I need to contact you! Voice message recordings are limited to 3 minutes – multiple messages are okay if needed.
What kind of a people are we?
Spreading ourselves across a land,
From sea to shining sea.
What do we stand for?
We don’t have a state religion,
Or a state language.
What has bound us all?
Perhaps it is common belief in freedom.
The common language of compassion.
And the common scourge of selfishness.
But can we really be described,
By the ideals we seek?
Or at times have left behind?
Maybe what binds us is in the soil.
From the blood of generations past,
And reborn on the fruited plain.
No zealots or righteous claims.
What grace was shed here?
It fell on the land we embrace.
It raised majestic mountains.
It set rivers flowing.
For the early people who crossed this land
It stills does,
Across the wilderness of thought.
How should we think now about that founding dream,
That saw beyond the years?
For while we may be flawed,
Our liberty is enshrined in law.
Are we a nation that builds walls?
No. We build roads.
And when a river must be crossed,
We build bridges.