We Could Have Been Freedom Fighters

It’s the Solstice & I visit Diana
in her home above agate-strewn shores
obscured by eucalyptus trees
and clouds, dense and gray as tanks

The shortest day of the year & we eat
warm tomato soup & bread
from the Good Earth natural foods
and toast the coming light
with the cheapest wine which is
still drinkable & is not so cheap
as it used to be

The president of the Ukraine visits
the president of the US. This is not a social call
but a call to arms against relentless Russian
aggression. He thanks the American people
who, seriously, have done little to help
except send money, send weapons, send missiles
I think of the Spanish Civil War, brave
foreign fighters who believed

Republican members of the Freedom Caucus
sit stony-eyed, believing nothing
as winter and Russian tanks roll across
the countryside & children
study in the dark & old ladies like us
huddle under thick woolen blankets
if they are lucky enough to own any
in their rubble-strewn homes

We watch it all on tv as Diana whips cream
for the organic eggnog & there is nutmeg, fresh,
spiced rum that reminds us of past New Year’s Eves
when Diana made batches of eggnog
aged for weeks, & when we danced long
after midnight & maybe that was the time
we could have become bold freedom fighters
if necessary, if someone needed our youth

and we were too young to know
to be afraid to die.

About the Poem

It’s about the solstice and Ukraine

About the Author

Dotty’s work has appeared in publications such as Rise Up Review, Poetry and Covid, Gyroscope, MacQueen’s Quinterly, Antonym, and others. She has had four chapbooks published, and a fifth coming out from Main Street Rag in spring 2023. She is the former editor of the eclectic literary magazine Turkey Buzzard Review in Bolinas California. Dotty’s “day jobs” are running political campaigns and practicing environmental law in Marin County California, with her husband and two dogs.

3 thoughts on “We Could Have Been Freedom Fighters”

  1. Jacqueline Coleman-Fried

    Wonderful poem, thank you for it! However, the winter solstice is the shortest day of the year, not the longest. Suggest fixing so as not to detract from poignant good work.

  2. Thanks commenters, stupid mistake fixed. Was thinking shortest day wrote longest. Thanks for catching it! Glad you liked it otherwise.

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