Saturday, July 04, 2009

Glory Be!

What a wonderful day it is today! The birthday of our nation! The materializing of this great country! The beginning of a union that has far exceeded those early expectations first dreamed about so many, many years ago! Oh, if those pilgrims could see our country now! Oh, if the founding fathers who toiled and stood firm in their vision could see their baby now!

When I was a little girl in Ohio, I spent my whole Fourth of July day eagerly anticipating the upcoming fireworks show in our area. I would constantly check the clock for the time to come for us to pack up the green Oldsmobile and head out with chairs, blankets and thermoses. I would look at the sun hung in the sky...darn if it still wasn't daylight out!! I would wish my parents a 'happy anniversary', but be more concerned with the fact that there were going to be fireworks tonight!!! I would help my dad hang the American flag on our front porch - its meaning enhanced after he returned from a tour of duty in Viet Nam. My brothers and I would get to set off sparklers. I'd be running around - a scrabbly, toe-headed bundle of uncontained energy - chasing fireflies around my back yard. A cleaned-out pickle jar, a hammer and a screwdriver and I had made them a home...complete with a mattress of freshly picked green grass and a twig from the elm tree for them to perch on. They could have cared less about the twig. Or the grass for that matter. My neighbor, who was a classic 'bad boy', but had the most charming of grin, showed me how to make firefly rings. I couldn't do it myself, so he made me one. I thought I was all that and a bag a chips as I pranced around my back yard in the twilight of the day...waving my glowing finger around to my brothers and best friend neighbor. Soon we were given the word 'Time to go!' and shrieks of excitement poured out! We drove out to the area, set up our place and waited, again!, while swatting mosquitoes and passing the time with restrained frolic. Then it would happen....the first thunderous boom of the firework being launched. We'd turn our eyes to the sky - hoping that we weren't just imagining that sound we had heard, and sure enough! An explosion of gold, white, red and blue glitter would puff out into the black background and gently rain down! The fireworks had begun and so had one of my favorite times of growing up back in the midwest. To this day, I never tire of fireworks...and to this day, I still have the little toe-headed girl giddiness in my heart for them.

Much has changed since the early settlers and forefathers set forth to create a new nation. Dreams realized, and dreams lost. Progress made, and lives lost. Words spoken, and fists crossed. Horror dropped, and hearts embraced.

I've never traveled off this continent of mine. I've never been to Europe or Africa. I've had many friends who have gone, who have seen other places, even lived in other countries. Maybe my cards will hold a future trip for me, some day, too. But this much I know to be true....there is no other land on this big blue marble that I would rather live in than this land. This land is my land. This land is your land. And despite our shortcomings, our weaknesses, our mis-steps....we are still a nation of love, of peace, of hope and most important....of humanity. We honor the human spirit. If for no other reason, that last trait is what sets us apart from any other community on this globe. We honor the human spirit.

I wish for you a day of family, friends, fun and FIREWORKS!!! God Bless America!!! Land that I love!!


Julie said...

Happy 4th! Hope you have a great day...and get to see some fireworks!

N-Search of Peace! said...

Hope that the 4th brings about more endearing memories, of a "toe-headed" girl that I love so much!

You are surely one of my favorite "firecracker's!"

Like a crazy women!

kimberly said...

oh love it, vb.....bryan did a tour in vietnam also....and so many memories to associate with the 4th.....who knew this day would make me a mommy for the first time?.....special before....amazing now!
thanks for the walk through life this a.m......and i second your thoughts.
love and hugs,