Old Glory

Old glory
Full glory
Riding on the wind
While tethered to the flagpole
In front of the boat dealership

Just beneath the “grand old flag”
Another flag flaps aimlessly in
The gusting winds

It is a political flag
Tattered and torn in half
Appearing like two flailing arms
Trying to keep a body afloat

Old glory
Full glory
Riding on the wind

Just beneath a nation
Tattered and torn by wounds
That enslaved
Wounds inflicted regularly
Long before the rise of great civilizations

Supported by words
Reportedly handed down from on high
Reinforced by those who wield power

“How could people let this happen?”

Oh, milgram…
Oh, zimbardo…

“When will they ever learn?”

Old glory
Full glory
“Blowing in the wind.”

Paul Cech has been writing poetry since 1970. Several of his poems have been published as Saturday Poems in the Pittsburgh- Post Gazette and the Thomas Merton Center of Pittsburgh has published several of his poems in NewPeople. Read other articles by Paul.