Everything touched a chord: Midwest brick, pull up windows, arab style to crown the top, Old Glory waving proud. My heart swelled for just a moment as I recalled the scent of sharpened pencils from the 3rd grade, gold stars and chalk dust. Mrs. Birsch. Mrs. Hodson. Lipstick on a coffee mug and that curly-haired blond boy at my side (how I had wished he'd like me!).
My own children leave for a school so unlike the memories I carry with me. But when I see this flag, Allison in the second row always stands up no matter where she is; in her mind she places her hand over her heart and recites the Pledge of Allegiance. She envisions the founding fathers leaning over a wooden desk with their plumed pens and buckled shoes, she hears the fife and cornet, she sings the victory song sung in post-freedom-war agony.
And then the recess bell rings.