Without Freedom Still

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We gathered, took time off,
pondered our freedom,
on the anniversary
our Declaration of Independence
when we dissolved the political bonds
when we proclaimed, to the world,
what we hoped for, what we believed in
as a people, set apart,
that we hold these truths to be self-evident,
that we are born equal, each one,
that the creator gave us unalienable rights,
life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

How wondrous are those words,
how much we have achieved
casting off the chains that hold us back
how far we have to go; but
We are free, by most measures

How hard life must be
in the many places on the globe
where people are not yet free
where there are people still
in the grip of slavery, in bondage,
in fear for their lives,
for their children’s lives
for any kind of future
for religious persecution,
indiscriminant death

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