“Oh! So posh!”
retirement and golf plantation
down here in the golden beach and surf dappled
south-eastern corner of North Carolina,
a new arrival of dubious origin
desired an ornament
for the lawn of his new house,
a decoration suitable to the country-club ambience
of our little Brigadoon.
at some distant automotive-recycling establishment,
a dilapidated, rusty, John Deere tractor
from Dust Bowl days,
hauled it in a flat-bed trailer
to the perfect spot,
square in the middle of his
putting-green zoysia-grass lawn,
jammed a golden-eagle-topped flag pole
into its gas tank funnel
and hooked on an antique Stars and Bars
to waft in our calm Southern breeze.
The category five roars of protest
that whipped up from our
so genteel Snow-Bird community!!
Shot from our POA came the suggestion
in a hastily typed missive,
(“return receipt requested”)
stripped of it’s PC niceties,
“GET THAT DAMN THING OFF YOUR LAWN!!!”
The new owner,
(who we have recently discovered is from
a small town, just south of Charlestown, South Carolina,
having moved North to escape the heat)
removing both pole and antique battle flag,
painting his Deere tractors engine
and its chassis,
there-by obeying both local authority
and his post-bellum patriotisms
call to remembrance,
having, in a silent, defiant Rebel-yell
transferred the mythic significance once bestowed
on his great grand daddy’s Confederacy
during the “late unpleasantness”
to his Stars N’ Stripes colored Deere.
How could our patriotic Baby Boomer community
turn inside-out to rid itself of this
colorful symbol of Democracy?
In front of an emergency town meeting,
standing before the Board of Commissioners there assembled,
that ungalvanized progeny of the Confederacy
resurrected John Hancock and “Light Horse” Henry Lee!
“I call it American Pride!” he proclaimed.
“It reaches deep down into my farmer family roots
and my reverence for our countries history,
on and on
he speechified for one hundred minutes,
(two for each State of the Union).
Then, finally reaching Wyoming,
he shifted gears and popped his clutch.
“….and my art ain’t junk!
One mans junk is another mans masterpiece!
What finer symbol of Americana
than a tough old John Deere Tractor?”
His expostulation and enthusiasm was infinite!
Our patience was finite for
our folding chairs have no cushions.
The Board is still deliberating.
(It’s been only two years…).
We pass his house,
stare and sigh,
shake our heads
and drive on by….
a new crisis has arisen.
Another felonious lawn offense
has appeared two cul-de-sacs away.
One mans red, white and blue John Deere
is another mans pink flamingo.
Philistines know no borders.
Our aging community
awaits with baited breath
the wisdom of our leaders.