This poem is for my brother who decided to wash his American flag instead of his truck (he has never washed his truck)
I Am What You Make Me
(The flag speaks)
by Franklin K. Lane
I am whatever you make me, nothing more.
I am your belief in yourself, your dream of what a people may become.
I live a changing life, a life of moods and passions, of heartbreaks and tired muscles.
Sometimes I am strong with pride, when workmen do a honest piece of work,
Sometimes I droop, for then purpose has gone from me, and cynically I play the coward;
But always I am all that you hope to be, and have the courage to try for.
I am song and fear, struggle and panic, and ennobling hope.
I am the day’s work of the weakest man, and the largest dream of the most daring.
I am what you make me, nothing more.
I Swing before your eyes as a bright gleam of color,
A symbol of yourself,
A pictured suggestion of that big thing which makes this nation.
My stars and stripes are your dream and your labors,
They are bright with cheer, brilliant with courge, firm with faith,
because you have made them so out of your hearts
I made this little video of the American flag blowing in the wind. After I added the soundtrack of Oh Beautiful I could only wish that I had made the video longer. This little snippet may be short but I think it will set you in the right mood if your at all patriotic.
I am the flag of the United States of America.
My name is Old Glory.
I fly atop the world’s tallest buildings.
I stand watch in America’s halls of justice.
I fly majestically over institutions of learning.
I stand guard with power in the world.
Look up and see me.
I stand for peace, honor, truth and justice.
I stand for freedom.
I am confident.
I am arrogant.
I am proud.
When I am flown with my fellow banners,
My head is a little higher,
My colors a little truer.
I bow to no one!
I am recognized all over the world.
I am worshipped – I am saluted.
I am loved – I am revered.
I am respected – and I am feared.
I have fought in every battle
of every war
for more then 200 years.
I was flown at Valley Forge,
Gettysburg, Shiloh and Appamatox.
I was there at San Juan Hill,
the trenches of France,
in the Argonne Forest,
Anzio, Rome and the beaches of Normandy.
Guam, Okinawa, Korea and
KheSan, Saigon, Vietnam know me.
I was there
I led my troops, I was dirty, battle worn and tired,
But my soldiers cheered me and I was proud.
I have been burned,
torn and trampled on the streets of countries I have helped set free.
It does not hurt for I am invincible.
I have been soiled upon, burned, torn and
trampled in the streets of my country.
And when it’s done by those
Whom I’ve served in battle – it hurts.
But I shall overcome – for I am strong.
I have slipped the bonds of Earth
and stood watch over the uncharted
frontiers of space from my vantage point on the moon.
I have borne silent witness to all of America’s finest hours.
But my finest hours are yet to come.
When I am torn into strips and used as bandages
for my wounded comrades on the battlefield,
When I am flown at half-mast to honor my soldier,
Or when I lie in the trembling arms of a grieving parent
at the grave of their fallen son or daughter,
I am proud.
Please forward my message to all who still love
and respect me that I may fly proudly
for another two hundred years.
From dusk till dawn the livelong night
She kept the tallow dips alight,
And fast her nimble fingers flew
To sew the stars upon the blue.
With weary eyes and aching head
She stitched the stripes of white and red.
And when the day came up the stair
Complete across a carven chair Hung Betsy’s battle-flag.
Like shadows in the evening gray
The Continentals filed away,
With broken boots and ragged coats,
But hoarse defiance in their throats;
They bore the marks of want and cold,
And some were lame and some were old,
And some with wounds untended bled,
But floating bravely overhead
Was Betsy’s battle-flag.
When fell the battle’s leaden rain,
The soldier hushed his moans of pain
And raised his dying head to see
King George’s troopers turn and flee.
Their charging column reeled and broke,
And vanished in the rolling smoke,
Before the glory of the stars,
The snowy stripes, and scarlet bars Of Betsy’s battle-flag.
The simple stone of Betsy Ross
Is covered now with mould and moss,
But still her deathless banner flies,
And keeps the color of the skies.
A nation thrills, a nation bleeds,
A nation follows where it leads,
And every man is proud to yield
His life upon a crimson field
For Betsy’s battle-flag!
This is a poem I wrote for my cousin after she finished her first (of many) 100 mile run. The run took place in Vermont at the Vermont one hundred miler.
Morning dark, stomach fluttering awaiting the gun
Start, I’m here, I can do it, Bang! It’s just begun
Light in hand up hill and down
Just beginning, hours to go, I won’t fall down
Aid stations pass 3, 5, and 9, with many more in due time
Continue on, forever the flow, as other runners go
Stage road aid, friends abound, one marathon down
Up hill and down, sometimes I put on a frown
Thoughts running too, I think I’ll sing
A happy song, eliminating my feet’s sting
Camp 10 bear for the first time
Heat on my mind, will I make it on time
Runners come, walkers go, one foot more, I’m gonna go
This I must, do it all, 100 miles, that is all
At 10 Bear two, I complete sixty eight point two
I’m on my way, to make a hundred, this day
Night comes on, but Gilly’s my light
The G.A.C. has entered the fight
As we run and hobble on, just in time to turn it on
Green lights line the bend, I’m all a glow, it’s gonna end
Finish nears with friends I hear, aunt, cousin, daughters ever so near
The moment, why, they’re all here, it’s almost time to enter in cheer
Complete this day they all have come, to see Vicki and
Her one hundred mile run, outcome