Poems About America
Creation of the Flag of the Thirteen Colonies
We sewed the flag together with much help,
parts of it done by one pair of hands, parts by another.
In all, thirteen women came together to sew the flag
representing the thirteen colonies that were to be united.
Some thought us foolish for carrying out
such an obvious ritual,
But we felt in our hearts that there was a reason to do this -
a reason that had to do with the meaning of the flag
and the purpose of the thirteen colonies coming together.
What that reason was, God only knew,
for it was clear that there was a plan,
but how it would turn out
was in the hands of Providence.
Each woman brought with her, her own needle,
thread, and scissors,
and we shared what needed to be shared
of tracing paper, calcium powder,
and other small accessories that were useful
to such a project.
Some of the women were near-sighted and had to hold
the cloth very close to their faces in order to sew.
Others, were the opposite.
Some laughed, and once in a while
someone broke into singing a song
from the hymnal that we shared in common
no matter what churches we attended.
These were the hands that shaped the
Thirteen Colony American flag.
Made by ordinary women, but ones invested
with a sense of purpose and discipline
so that they knew they would remain
in order to accomplish what they had set out to do.
Unfolding the flag at the end
and seeing it hoisted onto the wooden pole
that had stood the test of time
while being used for other purposes
was a great joy.
Indeed, in the course of a lifetime
it is hardly ever given to women to have
such a great part in their country's future,
And we were very proud to be part of this movement,
something that we had not expected,
yet which we all sought with eagerness.
This flag of the thirteen colonies,
this beautiful drapery sewn together
with thirteen pairs of hands -
We give it to you who will come after,
to you who will see what we have begun,
In order that you shall have an emblem
and symbol of great beauty to follow,
to represent the truths
that are most dear to your heart.
We of the past wish you of the future well.
We remain with you in our hearts.