Sunday Mornings, Summer 1965

When I Was Seven

John Philip Souza blares

The little box record player

Spins

Perched next to the screen door

Our bare feet march

Down the concrete

Steps

Shaded and cool still

Into the damp green grass

 

Little skinny arms outstretched

Linda holds a triangle of

The Flag.

We stop.

Standing at attention

The flag pole looms.

I unwind the rope

Clipping the hooks into the

Stars and Stripes’ grommets.

Daddy hoists the flag

Peggy and I unfurl it

Holding it carefully

Lest it touch the ground.

We watch it rise.

It floats up

Until the wind snaps

It

Wide and free.

 

One big brown hand

Three little pink hands

Salute.

About face!

Marching back to breakfast