Give out flags to dimpled little girls
To wave at drumming high school bands,
While other “Stars and Stripes” bedeck streamered bikes
Of bold young boys
In parades that haven’t changed in years.

Eat the brats
Washed down with cold ones.

Remember Uncle Johnny, the Doughboy,
Uncle Caz, the renegade,
Young Ralph freezing in Korea,
Uncle Joe, the sharp shooter,
And Dad, keeping B29s flying out of Biloxi.

Men with Country,  first and foremost, on their minds.

Unquestioned in loyalty
In times of black and white newsreels,
Free postage from the front,
And only good news from home.

All departed,  gone.
None forgotten though,
Living  on in the 4th, each year.

We, Families,
Gather with a quiet
“Thank  you, Heroes,”
Gently on our lips.

Charlene James- Duguid
Amissville, Virginia