Happy Fourth of July From Me To You

Dear America,
I have not forgotten you or what you mean to me. Along with millions, I celebrate you today. I think of the ways we honor you. I think of the barbecues and the cookouts. I think of the parks and recreational places where people gather on days like this. I also think about this day and the way we were when we were younger and a much younger country. I think about our purity and how our youthfulness was everything to us at one point.

On nights like this, after a while, we forgot what we were doing or thinking or talking about, and there we were, just a bunch of us from the neighborhood, looking up with our heads tilted backwards and our mouths opened wide in pure amazement. It was enough to make us say, “Ah,” and forget the things which we argued over. We were in awe of the nighttime heavens. There was no right or wrong. there was just a celebration.
The sky exploded in colors and sparkles and rumbled with thunder and explosions to celebrate another year of our declaration of independence. America, this is how we commemorate you. This is how we observe and honor you and your path. America, today is your day.

I remember the firework displays they held in the nearby Eisenhower Park. I remember the mortars and colorful streams of light and how this brightened the sky in such an incredible way.
I remember this and the link back to a heartwarming feel of my childhood and the sighting of lightening bugs in the early parts of summer.

We were a community then. We were a neighborhood.
I loved that . . .
I remember the bursts of color over the Korean War Monument in the park. I remember the loud booms and the crackles and hisses of rockets and aerial bombs which shot up from the ground.
Hell, if I’m being honest, I also remember us as teenagers and the crazy things we did, like bottle rocket fights and roman candles wars, using Saturn Missiles, which are a box of red plastic projectiles that whistle and report with a pop when ignited. Although crazy and reckless, still, there was something wholesome about the idea. We were not only kids, we were America’s kids, eager to laugh and live free.

I remember . . .
I remember this very well as a matter of fact.
I remember the parties and the families and the way we all gathered together, like a community.
I remember feeling something on this day. I felt something perfect, which I choose to keep and wholesome and preserved. I want to keep this unmolested and unchanged because this is my love for you, America, with my faults and all, I love you with all my heart.

I have always had a deep respect for our Flag and our National Anthem. I remember standing on the bow of a boat in a bay while fireworks lit the sky near the Jones Beach Tower.
The tower has been around for a long time and stands like a popular landmark in the center of a landscape that circles a road around the tower, which leads to the different directions along the beach.

I can say that I remember bits and pieces of this day on 1989 after consuming a few special doses of something a bit more mind-expanding. And the rocket’s red glare took on a much more intense feel for me that night. That’s for sure. I was about to undergo a major change that year. Only, I had no idea what was in store. But at least I had you. Right or wrong, you never abandoned me.

After a while, I always forget myself on days like this. And no matter what age, I always look up in amazement. I smile. I watch the sky take on the flickering shades of color and listen to the eruptions in the heaven.

I don’t care what they say or what they do. I don’t care how much they try to separate me from you, the left side or the right, because as far as I see it, I still declare myself as the heart of this country.
I am the middle.
I am you.
I have never seen us so divided as now. I have never seen politics as it is today. Politics has become the new religion. Pray my way has become vote my way; but either way, pray to the wrong God or vote for the wrong candidate and we become mortal enemies right there on the spot.
I wish this was not so but it is

I have no place in my heart for this. Not today.
No, I only want to look up at the sky and celebrate you. I want us to leave all of our differences to the side.
At least for today and even if this is only for today, I would like to see us join in unity to celebrate you.

And you know what America?
I’ve seen different sides of you. I have seen different places. I have seen you in cold places and in sunny places where your beaches are white with sand and your palm trees point upwards. I have been on both of your coastlines and in mid-states as well. I have seen the wealthy and the poor. I have seen the proud and the homeless. I have seen the free and the jailed and the healthy and the sick.

I honor you.
I adore you.
I love you
And I always will.

I am thinking of the late, great Ray Charles and the way he sung your song, America the Beautiful. I think of the lyrics and what they mean to me.

“Oh, beautiful” because good or bad, you will always be beautiful to me.
“For spacious skies,” and I’ve seen them. I have seen your skies in different places and at different times.

And your amber waves of grain . . .
Your purple mountain majesties above the fruited plain
America! Sweet, America!
God shed his grace on thee . . .
And crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.

Blessed father I am down on my knees asking for another year older and another year better. I am asking for us to find a way and come together. I am asking that this country be respected as dearly as The Blessed Mother, Herself because to me, she is our Mother.
This land is my land.
This land is your land
Blessed Father, I pray with all my heart that our troops remain safe and strong. I pray that the sick find their way to health and that our ignorance will no longer blind us, but guide us to a better, brighter tomorrow..

From my home, to your home, to all homes
Happy Birthday America

Look up when you can when the skies are dark and watch the colors brighten the sky. enjoy the fireworks. Celebrate and honor each other,
Below, I have added a link to a tune we all know.
I have a dream that coincides with this song. I dream of a time when you and me and the rest of us here can sit together, enjoy a meal like family, and not fight over who is right or wrong.


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