Chained For Seeking Refuge at A Port in the Storm, by Roberta Monokroussos

Star-spangled banner
denies asylum-seekers’ 
entry to its ports
Lady Liberty laments
human rights viewed as a crime

A woman’s heart breaks
children’s endless howling tears
followed by deep grief
Country’s acute injury
Does it need dialysis?


Suffer Our Children in Days of Pain, by Roberta Monokroussos

there is enough sorrow and pain to go around
you’d wonder why we want to dole it out to our
babies, infants, toddlers and children whose
only “crime” is seeking asylum

How do any of us sleep with the sound
of their crying in our ears
Watch the Rio Grande fill up with tears
Flight from credible fears
will not cease or decrease

We still serve as a beacon on a hill
Current heinous acts will not cause
a big enough chill
to lock our border pretending we seek order
assigning numbers forgetting names

Lady Liberty stands in our great port
trying ever so hard to sort
out the meaningless acts
and discordant facts
of the nation of immigrants

Asking for the Moon, by Roberta Monokroussos

My children and I wake up hungry at the border
So many people congregate in anxious disorder
We fled from our country to seek asylum
Our lives were in jeopardy; I am glum

I journeyed no food or money
clutched my children one by the hand
my baby in my arms afraid
for our safety, tired and hungry

Honduras in extreme poverty
the homeless street kids everywhere
join gangs—the Maras—no escape
no opportunity no safety

We have escaped from the violence
Some boys and men climb the fence
Persecuted by gangs without defense
we seek a “credible fear” interview
Hoping for humanitarian common sense

The border is closed this Sunday afternoon
Hope we shall find asylum very soon
We looked through the border fence
Hoping for humanitarian common sense.
The sun sets as we ask for the moon

Burdened, by Roberta Monokroussos

when your conscience is laden with guilt
as most of our consciences must be
do we get active politically
do we revise our budgets wisely
do we look at the people and say, “hello
how are you today”? before we go
before we go on our merry way–
off to our errands–not thinking how
we can make amends
do we do this everyday as we take note
of all those who die by famine and draught
of all those who died by genocide
and all the blood needlessly spilt
o our consciences are burdened–no doubt
by skeletons not yet dead and children’s eyes
seeming to pop out of their head
pity all our consciences so burdened with guilt