By Lucinda Marshall
My anthem is the serenade of birds,
sung without regard for map lines
delineating human assumption of dominion
over that which cannot be possessed,
and I will not pledge allegiance to,
or defend a flag of illusory freedom.
As the sun greets each day,
I will bravely stand up—against
racism, gendered hate, and xenophobia.
I will join in solidarity
with those who block pipelines
and protest gun violence,
those who feed the hungry
and work to stop the school
to prison pipeline,
and with every person who works
for the common good.
Solemnly I swear not to tolerate
the revision of history to fit
a fraudulent justification for
perpetual war or
wanton destruction of Earth.
This is my oath of citizenship,
because to do anything else is treason.
Lucinda Marshall is a writer, artist and activist. Her recent poetry publications include Sediments, Ground Fresh Thursday, Stepping Stones Magazine, Columbia Journal, Poetica Magazine, and ISLE. Her poem, “The Lilies Were In Bloom,” received an Honorable Mention in Waterline Writers’ Artists as Visionaries Climate Crisis: Solutions. She is the Founder of Feminist Peace Network and the author of numerous published essays and articles, and the blog, Reclaiming Medusa. Lucinda co-facilitates the award-winning Gaithersburg, Maryland Teen Writing Club. She is a member of the Maryland Writers’ Association, and Women, Action, and the Media.
Image credit: “Patriotic League” by Howard Chandler Christy, 1918, from the Library of Congress.