Rhymes of Rebellion

Rhymes of Rebellion

By Harry Shaw

Bandera, Texas

10 July, 2015




Where were you when they came for the Buddhas?


No doubt sipping on an icy Coke,


When the sentinels at Bamiyan went up in smoke.


Everybody loves their Mullahs.




Everyone has a bitch.


Every rattlesnake has its rattle.


Everyone has a burr under their saddle.


Toss the pages of history in the ditch.



Jihadists’ jihad upon the past.


Just think how long ancient Sumer has last.


Beheading statues and Christians alike for their Mullahs.


One can never go too far for their Allahs.




Now our American Mullahs vote to ban a flag.


And dig up dead generals from their graves.


Ban the banner, and, sell not the scarves and staves!


Sing songs of anarchy! Top the bottle with an oily rag.





Now if I were from Alabama,


I’d be a Talibana.


Now burn that banjo on your knee!


And forget not that every tyrant and rebel has his creed!




Now folks like me, have a proposition,


What the hell happened to the Loyal Opposition?


Politicians, hucksters, and inglorious gas bags,


Accusers’ sins unredeemed in their own preambles and flags.






Ban you statues, ban you flags;


And, artist and rebel alike will raise another!


Look at me! I’m offended!


Curses! Curses! Tear asunder!




Here we sit on our tottering thrones in this world of war,


And seek to kill off the past that rises with us.


Please tell me! Which of the past years are,


Ours for the keeping?

The Soldiers’ Love

The following poem was in part delivered  in my presentation before the West University Rotary Club on November 11, 2010. I modified parts of this but the central theme remains intact. It is my wish that you understand the sincerity with which this piece was written.


The Soldiers’ Love

By Harry Shaw


More than kisses, letters mingle souls.” John Donne

Soldiers’ Love:

The soft tender embrace of a beloved,

The first wail of their newborn child,

Home and family.

Soldiers’ Love:

Angels on our shoulders,

The silent prayers of wives and mothers,

Coming home.

Soldiers Love:

The passing of the colors,

The singing of anthems sweet,

Duty to God and country.

Soldiers Love:

Marching to the sound of the guns,

The sergeant barking orders,

Chaplains on the line.

This Soldier Loves:

The shining copper pans left on the counter,

Remembering my mother’s kitchen,

The book of Love Poems by John Donne that sits on the shelf.

Farewell to a Soldier Loved:

The last words uttered by the fallen,.

Not wanting to say goodbye,

The crack of the rifles at the playing of taps.

The Soldier Loved:


Service above self,


The Soldier Loved and Remembered:

The hallowed green grass of Arlington,

Rows of white marble

An emptiness in my heart.