I've fired the gun,
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bore the flag.
My heart was stirred,
but never won.
You can be a grunt,
a nuke tech, or
even a JAG.
But now my weapon
is the spoken word.
Studs, Edward, and now me.
I only hope to be placed
in such a Pantheon of talkers.
And now in retrospect it all makes sense.
Wishing to show people humanity
in it's past tense.
But why not show the People
the Americana that I love?
The long dead cotton field,
with it's long dead farmhouse,
leaning on a long dead pecan tree.
The ancient lady who still churns her own butter.
The younger, but still old lady who lived
in rural Alabama when a young preacher named King came to town.
The lady who was a tester of the Polio vaccine.
The third generation steel mill worker,
who now has to find a job.
THESE are the stories that move my tears,
swell my pride.
No songs do it, no amount of explosions or speeches do it.
Speaking with them, having them tell me what makes them great
and so what makes America great.
Of course, they'd never say they are great.
THEY are far too modest for such things.
They simply smile, and go about living a freedman's life.