Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Betsy Ross

I never intended to be a rebel
at the time, I was more of a lover
though I suppose that eloping with John Ross
and marrying him in Hugg’s Tavern might
have been construed as rebellious
having then been “read out” by the Quakers
disowned by the Griscoms at twenty-one
hardened me to perils I would face
our surreptitious boat ride across the Delaware
was my first act of protest
the war against the British killed John and husband number two
suffering Tory soldiers in my home
I sewed buttons for George W.
and between upholstery jobs
made a few puffy shirts for him, too
he asked if I could sew a flag for our new country
I answered with my five-pointed star
then I whip stitched myself into history
today, you say someone might burn the Stars & Stripes
to protest our own government’s trespasses
somewhat unpatriotic, indeed
I would have burned that “Don’t Tread On Me” flag
protesting just its ugliness
you know, elections do not swiftly satisfy unrest
sometimes a nation will not extract itself from war
a little flame and smoke
might jar it from complacency
as the star spangled kindling of revolt bursts in the air
this symbolic speech might be quicker, more stirring

here, let me light the match

Barry DeCarli
©2010 Barry DeCarli

Friday, March 18, 2011


who can put it back
together again
Spring into Winter
not the other way around
still the snow covers some ground
islands of white in the gathering green
but some things happen
too late to matter too much
can history hurry
can it change the way we look back
when the wave came and swept us away
after we stepped into what we thought
would be the future
there were ideas louder than our whispered demands, our cries
starlight speeding to you across a universe

but no one who knew was there to see it arrive

Barry DeCarli
March 18, 2011

Friday, March 11, 2011

enough time

approaching the night leaded
weighted with vague fear
unabated anxiety mixing
hope without piety nixing
no dream, no seer knows
no dope other than
pinot noir
lowering the bar
to dance under
a hundred places still
to see, to wonder
don’t know if I will
whether the rainbow
or the star
will cover the sky
or if some other pressure
will cloud the eye
too low or too high
still praying to fly

Barry DeCarli
March 11, 2011
Copyright 2011 Barry DeCarli