Weekly poem on Trump Presidency
Sewn Stripes, Embroidered Stars
After the election, once McCain had conceded and Josey bought a round
of Rittenhouse for the bar, after we stumbled into the ladies’ room
at the Independent for necking, crying, then rode back home with Bob and Chelsea
in Rose Marie’s car, honking and hollering OBAMA! OBAMA! out the windows
to assembled crowds of happy Americans all the way across town, we watched our
Tivoed election coverage, drank Seelbachs, crashed, woke up and bought a flag.
We went online and bought a flag. 100% cotton, made in America, sewn stripes,
embroidered stars. A flag pole, a flag pole bracket. I had never bought a flag,
worried with the vague remembered worry from Girl Scouts about how to fold the flag,
when to bring it down, but Josey said We’ll keep our porch light on it.
It’s cotton, so it’s going to fade and get a little speckled with mildew, a little
tattered over the winter. It’s going to be beautiful. We’ll never take it down.
Jill McDonough’s books of poems include Habeas Corpus (Salt, 2008), Where You Live (Salt, 2012), and Reaper (Alice James, 2017). The recipient of three Pushcart prizes and fellowships from the Lannan Foundation, NEA, NYPL, FAWC, and Stanford, her work appears in Slate, The Threepenny Review, and Best American Poetry. She teaches in the MFA program at UMass-Boston and directs 24PearlStreet, the Fine Arts Work Center online. Her fifth poetry collection, Here All Night, is forthcoming from Alice James Books.