The Fourth

August 24, 2009
Because it is Saturday
and the fourth of July
Harding’s home is
alive again.

Always the patriot
I step through my white
picket fence and onto
the gray limestone walk.

Three blocks away,
in his honor an ice
cream social bustles
in his yard.

The high school band
plays twenties tunes
young girls fox trot
in dry summer grass

Blankets spread in the
lawn as narrow beams
of sun throws gold
across ladies in hats

Fedoras tip and
cardboard bowls of
homemade vanilla
are buried in strawberry

Warren steps out onto
his front porch, he speaks,
of teapot dome & hangs
his head. The crowd quiets.

Somewhere a dog barks,
the afternoon sun sets, then
warm skies burst to color
as fireworks explode.

After the last flag’s folded
I walk home on the dark street
and sit on my own front porch
happy and at peace in Ohio.


Ohio Sod (Absolution)

August 24, 2005

Where once your native grasses grew
Where once your wildflowers azure blue
Where once the elk and oak tree stood
Where shadows fell in ancient wood
Now stands a blacktop turning lane
Now drivers swear and go insane
Now filth and fast food cartons lie
Where once a pure brook babbled by

Where red men stood in reverence here
Where plains grazed bison and the deer
Where Indian song once filled the night
Where eagles soared majestic flight
Now broken glass from beer and wine
Now rotting wood from an old bar sign
Now latte’ shop and condom box
Where once the home of lark and fox

Where farmer once tilled the rich dark soil
Where sweat and honor a mans best toil
Where horses grazed and cattle lowed
Where sweetgrass grew in meadow green
Now replaced with a coke machine

Where barns were filled with bales of hay
Where swine were fed at end of day
Where hens laid eggs and roosters crowed
Where children played with dog and cart
Now stands above the food that grew
Now claimed by Wal-Mart and Game world too

Where freedom choice and liberty
Where sacrifice understood to keep it free
Where home was a place of rest and prayer
Where family came from everywhere
Now scattered about divorced and broke
Now hardened lives and greed and doubt
Now homie know what it all about

Where now I drop on bended knee
Where this tear falls I hear the plea
Where people hope for a new day now
Now shape the sword into a plow
Now first step out across the street
Now meet  your neighbor finally greet

With open eyes understanding the sin
Day of confession
Absolution begins.