|| 2 Poems by Chris Middleman ||‏


Four at my window ledge,
resting oily wings before flying south

over the reeds across the street,
where the firehouse flies the flag halfway

As far as I know, the president is still alive
so I’ll accept that gesture on his behalf

as acknowledgment for another wasted night
in a city where ugly birds won’t even stay for long



People in my hometown
fly the flag on holidays
Fluttering at passersby,
it’s no different from a
grandma’s craft store windsock

After September 11th,
they paid for an enormous flag
to be dedicated in our town’s center
on some 4th of July

I bet there was a 21 gun salute
with both fire engines, polished brightly,
flanking the VFW men, so stoic
in little fast food hats

From the cemetery on the hill
you’ll see the flag hang flaccid
Given up on waiting for wind strong enough
to unfurl it entirely, so as to
hide the dead smokestacks below