The Giant American Flags of Montauk

The Giant American Flags of Montauk
Hung for the Fourth of July

There is a comfort in knowing that I'm here now
These symbols of lunacy are raised about the town by firemen
Big fire trucks. Big ladders.
Big Ford pick ups. Large friendly arms.
Nothing wrong at all here.
Just hoisting a brobdingnagian flag.
Ho hum.

Find some synonyms for flag:

An infinitely vulgar beach towel.
The larger the blanket, the more invisible the sin it covers.
This tarp whose hangers need not understand ground cover as its true talent.
A canopy under which iced coffee is a birthright.

Make wrong-doing unseen by smothering it in the largest, slickest rectangle of fabric.
Suspend it in plain view for all to see.
A tapestry so unavoidably large.
How big the area of concealment must be.
The flag a tiny bulging suture in the scheme of things
covering an inflamed infection.

Sure let's have a parade then.
Let us scare away the ghosts of our misdeeds
Let us amplify our pseudo-successes as proof of our exceptionalism
Let us overstate our large scaled celebration
Let us distill this into a day of horns blaring in a line

Set the sky alight with a fire fight's colorful illustration
Our much deserved pleasure.
Everyone's favorite save the shell shocked veterans

Save the shell shock victims of their mortar fire.
The guilt of wrong does not disappear into a suburb of itself
Brotherhood is a hiding place.
But there is no cover large enough.
It has happened.
We did it and have done it.
It is not yet done.


*Hear a live reading on this piece from 'Yer Only mBan', 2016, here: Readings of Writings