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Ellis Island By: Joseph Bruchac

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Abby Sweitzer

on 11 August 2014

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Transcript of Ellis Island By: Joseph Bruchac

"Ellis Island" by Joseph Bruchac
Abby Sweitzer P6 L.A.
What is the poem mostly about?
The poem "Ellis Island" by Joseph Bruchac is about the American dream. All of the immigrants had a dream--the dream of what their life would be once they stepped foot in America. The speaker of the poem is a man who going to tour Ellis Island, and he is thinking about his grandparents. He has grandparents who were immigrants, and he also has Native American grandparents. The poem shows he is glad that his grandparents came, but also he is sad because when the immigrants came to America, they took the Native American's land, the land of his other grandparents.
Relation to Unit Theme
This poem fits the unit themes, journey and living without, in a number of ways. The way the poem fits "journey" is that these immigrants came to America with nothing but pennies in their pockets. They left everything to get freedom.These immigrants took a journey and saw the Statue of Liberty. The poem says, "as dreams of forests and meadows waiting for those who'd worked a thousand years yet never owned their own." This quote says they have dreamed so long for this day to come to the land of freedom to own land that they never could have worked hard enough to own in their old countries. At Ellis Island their journey was almost over. Their dreams came true. They gained freedom with the price of leaving everything, "living without," and starting new.
Journey or Destination?
The journey is more important than the destination. Without the journey, you wouldn't have the dream, the dream of the destination. Also, without the journey, you wouldn't have the curiosity of what the new place could be. For example, when Christopher Columbus sailed to America, on that journey he had the curiosity of what he might find or if he would make it to his real destination. From the poem, the author says, "on its way to the island of the tall woman, green," which describes the journey of the immigrants, the steps they took to reach freedom. The journey gave them the dream of America and what their new life would be. The journey gave them the experience and the curiosity of the new world.
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