US Flag Image

History of the Flag
Historic & Current American Flags
Patriotic Writings
Special Links
A Salute to Those Who Serve: Paster and Present
Frequently Asked Questions
Related Information
Related Links
Home


USFlag.org
 Site Key:
 
 Click to Listen
   Click to Print
Search:  
  

Poems of Patriotism

Presented here are a some poems that I have assembled for all of you with a patriotic heart. If you have a favorite poem that you would like to contribute to this collection please feel free to do so! Be sure to include the title & author (if known) to oldglory@usflag.org.
Thank You!

The American Flag

Joseph Rodman Drake

When freedom, from her mountain height Unfurled her standard to the air, She tore the azure robe of night And set the stars of glory there. She mingled with its gorgeous dyes The milky baldric of the skies, Then from his mansion in the sun She called her eagle-bearer down And gave into his mighty hand The symbol of her chosen land.

§

Up to Poetry Index

The Republic From "The Building Of The Ship"

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State! Sail on, O Union, strong and great! Humanity with all its fears, With all the hopes of future years, Is hanging breathless on the fate! We know what Master laid the keel, What Workmen wrought thy ribs of steel, Who made each mast, and sail, and rope, What anvils rang, what hammers beat, In what forge and what a heat Were shaped the anchors of thy hope! Fear not each sudden sound and shock, 'Tis of the wave and not the rock; 'Tis but the flapping of the sail, And not a rent made by the gale! In spite of rock and tempest's roar, In spite of false lights on the shore, Sail on, nor fear to breast the sea! Our hearts, our hopes, are all with thee, Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears, Our faith triumphant o'er our fears, Are all with thee, - are all with thee!

§

Up to Poetry Index

ODE TO THE FLAG

By Linda Sheehan Cunningham
COPYRIGHT 1970 & 1996

Our Nation's Flag is a stirring sight As it flutters proudly in the breeze Its colors of blue, red and white Mean so much to you and me Red stands for courage and hardiness The white means innocence and purity Blue for justice, perserverance and vigilance In its promise to keep us free. This banner stands for a bountiful land, Its government, people, and ideals, The stripes from the thirteen colonies stand, Its symbolism is very real. Each State now is represented By a star of white on blue President Washington first presented The American Flag to You. Many brave men have fought and died To protect it from dishonor and disgrace. Wives have mourned and mothers have cried So we could remain...the United States. The sight of this Banner brings feeling of joy, Of courage, pride and freedom to all. A symbol of our nation in all it's glory, On the moon Old Glory stands tall Background information about the ODE TO THE FLAG

§

Up to Poetry Index

THE FLAG GOES BY

Henry Holcomb Bennett

Hats off! Along the street there comes A blare of bugles, a ruffle of drums, A flash of color beneath the sky: Hats off! The flag is passing by! Blue and crimson and white it shines, Over the steel-tipped, ordered lines. Hats off! The colors before us fly; But more than the flag is passing by. Sea-fights and land-fights, grim and great, Fought to make and to save the State: Weary marches and sinking ships; Cheers of victory on dying lips; Days of plenty and years of peace; March of a strong land's swift increase; Equal justice, right, and law, Stately honor and reverend awe; Sign of a nation, great and strong Toward her people from foreign wrong: Pride and glory and honor,--all Live in the colours to stand or fall. Hats off! Along the street ther comes A blare of bugles, a ruffle of drums; And loyal hearts are beating high: Hats off! The Flag is passing by!

§

Up to Poetry Index

The Old Flag

H.C. Bunner

Off with your hat as the flag goes by! And let the heart have it say; You're man enough for a tear in your eye That you will never wipe away. You're man enough for a thrill that goes To your very finger-tips-- Ay! the lump just then in your throat that rose Spoke more than your parted lips. Lift up the boy on your shoulder high, And show him the faded shred; Those stripes would be red as the sunset sky If death could have dyed them red. Off with your hat as the flag goes by! Uncover the youngster's head; Teach him to hold it holy and high For the sake of its sacred dead.

§

Up to Poetry Index

O Flag of our Union

O flag of our Union,
To you we'll be true,
To your red and white stripes,
And your stars on the blue;
The emblem of freedom,
The symbol of right,
We children salute you,
O flag fair and bright!

*A poem taught in American classrooms nearly a century ago.

Reprinted 1995 by AMVETS, 4647 Forbes Boulevard, Lanham, Maryland 20706-9961

§

Up to Poetry Index

I Am Old Glory

I Am Old Glory:   For more than ten score years I have been the banner of hope and freedom for generation after generation of Americans.
Born amid the first flames of America's fight for freedom, I am the symbol of a country that has grown from a little group of thirteen colonies to a united nation of fifty sovereign states.
Planted firmly on the high pinnacle of American Faith my gently fluttering folds have proved an inspiration to untold millions.
Men have followed me into battle with unwavering courage.
They have looked upon me as a symbol of national unity.
They have prayed that they and their fellow citizens might continue to enjoy the life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, which have been granted to every American as the heritage of free men.
So long as men love liberty more than life itself; so long as they treasure the priceless privileges bought with the blood of our forefathers; so long as the principles of truth, justice and charity for all remain deeply rooted in human hearts, I shall continue to be the enduring banner of the United States of America.

Originally written by Master Sergeant Percy Webb, USMC.

§

Up to Poetry Index

My American Flag

The People of today
just rant and rave.
They burn my symbol of freedom,
I just want to grab and shake them.
They have no sense of pride,
For your beauty you never denied.

Like my brothers before me,
I have fought to keep your colors free.
With every battle that we had won,
you were there to show who was number one.
When our brothers had died,
you caressed their bodies with pride.

We have our leaders to thank,
for allowing these people their prank.
To them it may be a cloth of colors,
to me it stands for freedom and honor.
We must ask our leaders to debate,
and change our flags fate.

My American Flag this promise I give,
to hold you high and let you live.
My words to you are profound,
I'll keep your colors off the ground.
I will guard and protect your stars and stripes,
with all my power, might and life.

Dan Solodon, a Disabled American Veteran, wrote "My American Flag" in college for a contest by the Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society in Oklahoma and took 2 awards locally and Regionally , November 23, 1991. Dan can be contacted at dsolodon@r66cci.com

§

Up to Poetry Index

RAGGED OLD FLAG

I walked through a county courthouse square,
On a park bench an old man was sitting there.
I said, "Your old courthouse is kinda run down."
He said, "Naw, it'll do for our little town."
I said, "Your flagpole has leaned a little bit,
And that's a Ragged Old Flag you got hanging on it.

He said, "Have a seat", and I sat down.
"Is this the first time you've been to our little town?"
I said, "I think it is." He said, "I don't like to brag,
But we're kinda proud of that Ragged Old Flag."

"You see, we got a little hole in that flag there
When Washington took it across the Delaware.
And it got powder-burned the night Francis Scott Key
Sat watching it writing _Oh Say Can You See_.
And it got a bad rip in New Orleans
With Packingham and Jackson tuggin' at its seams."

"And it almost fell at the Alamo
Beside the Texas flag, but she waved on through.
She got cut with a sword at Chancellorsville
And she got cut again at Shiloh Hill.
There was Robert E. Lee, Beauregard, and Bragg,
And the south wind blew hard on that Ragged Old Flag."

"On Flanders Field in World War I
She got a big hole from a Bertha gun.
She turned blood red in World War II
She hung limp and low by the time it was through.
She was in Korea and Vietnam.
She went where she was sent by her Uncle Sam."

"She waved from our ships upon the briny foam,
And now they've about quit waving her back here at home.
In her own good land she's been abused --
She's been burned, dishonored, denied and refused."

"And the government for which she stands
Is scandalized throughout the land.
And she's getting threadbare and wearing thin,
But she's in good shape for the shape she's in.
'Cause she's been through the fire before
And I believe she can take a whole lot more."

"So we raise her up every morning,
Take her down every night.
We don't let her touch the ground
And we fold her up right.
On second thought I DO like to brag,
'Cause I'm mighty proud of that Ragged Old Flag."

Written by Johnny Cash

Submitted by Beverly Hutchings, McMinnville, Tennessee. hutchings@blomand.net

Beverly adds this P.S. This is to my knowledge the only poem ever written by Johnny Cash that was not intended to be sung. He has performed this a number of times at the "Pops Goes the Fourth" concerts in Boston on the 4th of July. His book *Man In Black* reveals the inspiration behind it. Hope everyone else enjoys this as much as I do.

§

Up to Poetry Index

This page is maintained by Duane Streufert, Contact Us.
Questions or comments welcome!
This Site Established on 20 November 1994.
Last Updated 10 February 2005.

Web Design and Development by Visionary Enterprises