Patriotism Reconsidered by Lucinda Marshall






Ed. Note: Another in our series of poems by writers who participated in Arlington Writers Resist.

My anthem is the serenade of birds,

sung without regard for map lines

delineating human assumption of dominion

over that which cannot be possessed,

and I will not pledge allegiance to,

or defend a flag of illusory freedom.


As the sun greets each day,

I will bravely stand up—against

racism, gendered hate, and xenophobia.


I will join in solidarity

with those who block pipelines

and protest gun violence,

those who feed the hungry

and work to stop the school

to prison pipeline,

and with every person who works

for the common good.


Solemnly I swear not to tolerate

the revision of history to fit

a fraudulent justification for

perpetual war or

wanton destruction of Earth.


This is my oath of citizenship,

because to do anything else is treason.


(Published in Indolent Books Transition Poem series)


Lucinda Marshall is a writer, artist, and activist. Her recent poetry publications include Sediments, GFK, Indolent Books Transition Series, Stepping Stones Magazine, Columbia Journal, Poetica Magazine, and ISLE. Her poem, “The Lilies Were In Bloom” received an Honorable Mention in Waterline Writers’ “Artists as Visionaries Climate Crisis Solutions”.

Image By DaFoos – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,; Author photo “Anonymous Quilted,” courtesy of the author.



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