More Flag

I like to hang my flag;
To tempt my neighbors to reflect
On what it means- to me, or perhaps to them.
I like to see its candy stripes blowing sideways,
And the perfect square of stars,
against the imbalance
of navy blue.
It shouts to me “the sky’s the limit,”
the stripes rigidly profess the order of laws.
Anymore it reminds me
Of the distance between me,
And my neighbors
Between me and the Marine I called Dad,
Between me and the human layers,
I still feel, hand to heart,
Before even thinking
Of throwing out the first pitch;
the thumping persistent, like an American
as a reminder to observe,
All that I take as a given.
I have a home to hang my flag on,
I have a home for my kids to come back to.
I wonder why others don’t hang their flag
As proudly as my father taught me to hang mine?

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