(City dump … Springfield, Oregon)
With shame choked eyes I stood in awe
as I saw my flag, tired and soiled of life,
being strangled by crushed beer cans and rubbish,
gaining an unarmed prestige a-top a dung heap;
Red and white stripes ripped and frayed,
tattered stars on a threadbare, blue backdrop,
grommets torn from its faded body.
Gladly had it given its proud life in service
to its country and now, in return,
it receives a rag’s burial at the city dump.
Crying its final, tearful salute to an ungrateful generation,
it waved with embarrassed pride
and disappeared beneath the bulldozer’s squalid tracks;
a dishonorable entombment for a discarded veteran.