From the brain of commenter Franksies, whose previous poem was criticized:
Well, of course it’s all very amateurish.
But, here’s another, if you please. (apologies to John Greenleaf Whittier’s and his famous ‘Barbara Frietchie’)
Up from the meadows rich with corn,
Clear in the cool September morn,
The clustered spires of old Woodstock stand
Green-walled by the rills o’ McHenry County land.
Round about them orchards sweep,
Apple- and pear-tree fruited deep,
Fair as a garden of our Lord
-To the eyes of Franks’ ravening Section 8 horde,
On that pleasant morn of the early fall
When the last homeschooling families fled o’er Boone Co.’s bayoneted ‘fire-wall.’
Over the Fox winding down,
Horse and foot, into Sagertown.*
Four hundred flags with huge Red Stars,
Four hundred flags with their blood-red bars,
Flapped in the morning wind: the sun
Of noon looked down, and saw not one.
Up rose old Barbara Frietchie then,
Bowed with her fourscore years plus ten;
Bravest of all in Sagertown,
She took up the flag the MS-13 gang hauled down;
In her attic window the staff she set,
To show that one heart was loyal yet.
Up the street came the looters long dread,
Jack-o-napes Franks, himself, riding ahead.
Under his horned, slouched hat left and right
He glanced: the Old Glory flag met his cat-eyed sight.
“Halt!”— his dusky, blood-caked ranks stood fast.
“Fire!”— out blazed the kalishnikovs’ blast.
It shivered the window, pane and sash;
It rent the banner with seam and gash.
Quick, as it fell, from its shattered pole,
Dame Barbara snatched her now Star-Spangled stole;
She leaned far out on her window-sill,
And shook it forth with a ‘Bunker Hill’ will.
“Shoot, if you must, this old gray head,
But spare my country’s flag,” she said.
A shade of sadness, a blush of shame,
Over the visage of the tyrant came;
The nobler nature within Franks stirred
To life at that woman’s brave deed and word:
“Who touches a hair of yon gray head
Dies like a dog! March on!” he said.
All day long through Calhoun street
Sounded the tread of tramping feet:
All day long that free flag tost
Over the heads of the devilish host.
Ever its torn folds rose and fell
On the loyal winds that loved it well;
And through the hill-gaps sunset light
Shone over it with a warm good-night.
Barbara Frietchie’s feat is now long o’er,
And Big Brother Franks rides his raids no more.
Honor to her! And let a tear
Fall, for her sake, on Franks’ burnt-out bier.
Over Barbara Frietchie’s grave,
Flag of Freedom and Union, wave!
Peace and Order and Beauty draw
Round thy symbol of Light and Law;
And ever the stars above look down
On thy stars below in re-renamed Woodstock town!
*Woodstock was renamed Sagertown (2020-2023) to gratify a wicked Commissar there in power, during the brutal reign of the Tax Tyrants’ Terror.