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July 2019 Vol. 15 No. 2

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Peter Newton

No Patriot

Online my father bought a light to illuminate the flag on top of his new flagpole. It looks like a little flying saucer about the size of a dinner plate. The circular array of LEDs are a little bright I say testing it before I install the thing up there for everyone to see. They’ll get used to it he says speaking of his busy-body neighbors. I attach the light by slipping the stem of the gold ball through the hole in the center of the plastic saucer locking the spaceship in place. The battery that keeps the solar strips alive lasts up to 18 months my father says reading aloud the instructions from China. Figures he says probably longer than I will. Together we look up just at the moment his little UFO pops to life. I have no way to gauge my father’s pride. I am no veteran. I have never fired a gun. Together we say nothing and that amounts to something. A sort of pledge of allegiance neither of us have the words to share.

so much respect
after the fact
tomb of the unknown