The flag now signifies the bully’s wrath,
Red, White and Blue, Old Glory, Stars and Bars,
Or rather, Stars and Stripes: the meaning hath
Been altered, to describe the love of wars,
The bloody stripes delivered with the lash
To them consigned to work, but not for cash.
I’ve seen it by the early light of dawn,
Diminutive Star Spangled Banners gleaming,
Arrayed upon some hard right-winger’s lawn,
With signs and banners base invective screaming,
So that the emblem of “Land of the Free”
No longer gives a hoot for liberty.
The flag becomes—with slogans that attest
“Colors don’t run”—a talismanic mascot,
The bully’s cry that “my team is the best,”
Cloth worn like a bandana or an ascot,
As free speech, fair play, and due process languish,
Enough to leave Old Betsy Ross in anguish.
The bully’s credo, “Might Makes Right,” ascends
The flagpole both a symbol and example
Of veiled intimidation it portends,
“Don’t tread on me” reduced to “Let us trample,”
The Rag subverted, by such without manners,
Bigots and knaves, provincialism’s fanners.
Land of the Free? No more. “It never was.”
No, ever many souls had been excluded,
But flag and Constitution served hope’s cause,
Freedom to come, and so Red, White and Blue did
A service to an ideal lately mired,
Self-government, which seems to have expired.