Who is thy neighbour! See him stand,
with sunken cheek and eye,
where hunger shows the empty hand
thy bounty can supply!
Look where the widowed mother pines
for what thou well canst spare;
where paused age, in want, reclines,
and see thy neighbour there!
Behold him in the stranger, thrown
upon a foreign shore,
who, homeless, friendless, and alone,
is shivering at thy door!
Go meet him in thine enemy,
and good for evil pay;
and bear in mind, for such as he,
thy Saviour bids thee pray.
Go seek him in the dungeon’s night,
and comfort there impart;
implore the smile of Heaven to light
that desolated heart.
Look where the son of Africa sighs
for rights enjoyed by thee;
he is thy neighbour! Loose his ties
and set the captive free!
Columbia, favored of the skies!
how can thy banner wave,
while at my feet, thy neighbour lies
a crushed and fettered slave?
There is a blot among its stars;
a stain upon thy hand;
a mark upon thy face, that mars
the beauty of our land!
Thou, noble tree of liberty,
should not thy verdure fade
o’er him who would his neighbour see
excluded from thy shade?
Did they who reared thee by their toil
not will thy fruit to be,
alike, for all who thread thy soil,
a harvest sweet and free?
Hannah Flagg Gould. USA (1789-1865)