Olivia Gatwood – “Liberty”


When the blonde counselor
showed up at Christian camp, the boys stopped being fun. She arrived, a stack
of bubblegum suitcases next to her, one reserved only for her headbands, and the boys stopped mid-dribble, one foot in the river. Macaroni necklaces slid
off their strings and onto the floor. Rumor was, the camp dog
only had three legs because a boy swung his gun
during rifle practice, just to drink a glimpse. “We should be team building,
not breaking,” she said one evening, after canceling Capture The Flag. All of the boys said, “Hallelujah!”,
suggested trust falls. All of the boys held out their hands. I declared war
when she banned potato chips. She called for vegetables.
The cooks planted a garden. I swore I would find her guilty
for something– cigarettes in her tennis shoes, an expired condom between book pages. I waited for her to pull
last night’s meal from her throat with the hook of two fingers, for two pairs of feet in a shower. But each time I hid
in the bathroom stalls and spied, she only flat-ironed her hair
in thick lemonade chunks. Each time I pretended to sleep, she only whispered to God
at the foot of her bed, as creased as a pleated skirt. Each time I followed her to the yard, she only raised the flag, watched it float up into the sunrise, a quiet hum of “America the Beautiful”
under her breath. She did not know
that when the boys lined up in four straight rows to sing the anthem, they were singing it for her. When they praised the land
of purple mountains, of shining seas, when they belted “O beautiful,”
it was for her. When they sang “America, America,”
they were calling her name. (cheers and applause)

21 thoughts on “Olivia Gatwood – “Liberty”

  1. This is one of my favorite poems from New American Best Friend, so glad you uploaded it.

  2. yet another amazing poem, i clicked so fast when i got this notification! i am so so in love with her words

  3. This poem Carries a lot of lessons in it. Like how sometimes we can have misconceptions about people who turn out to be the very best we can ever meet. And she(the poet) who dug up until she found out how much of a role model the blonde was and how clueless the boys are. Just amazing

  4. I seeing through the blue eyes
    What I wonderful world,✨☘
    I don't know what is world
    but I seeing through the blue eyes
    what wonderful world,✨☘
    Imagining feeling stars shining in the sky,
    Birds chirping in the morning.
    Flowers 'r blazing in this sweet dreams,
    You'r holding to me,
    It's like a golden time,
    I seeing through the blue eyes
    What I wonderful world,✨☘
    I don't know what is world
    but I seeing through the blue eyes
    what wonderful world,✨☘
    These moments full of the moon,
    You'r the lady with I dancing on occasion floor,
    You healing to me in the sky and I devoted all of mine to you,
    I seeing through the blue eyes
    What I wonderful world,✨☘
    I don't know what is world,
    but I seeing through the blue eyes
    what wonderful world,✨☘
    I don't know if I breaking rules
    But maybe I'm making strong our trust,
    maybe I feeling and causing to the lovely moments,
    My heart always sunshine with you,
    Our story without end and exists here forever,,
    I seeing through the blue eyes
    What I wonderful world,✨☘
    I don't know what is world,
    but I seeing through the blue eyes what wonderful world

    If you like this join me on telegram 🌷😃 @Tulip_Harry

  5. ✋🏼👊🏼😃❤️Thick lemonade chunks. That is cool. Sending you love and light. Namaste 🙏🏼☮️

  6. That 1 dislike was from a boy that enjoyed the girl's potato chip ban..

  7. There's Something Olivia Puts In Her Art That Makes It Echo In The Listeners Minds After Her Last Word… I love it💛💛

  8. How am I even a day late seeing this?! I love Love LOVE Olivia 😍😍😍

  9. Wow. You teach little kids lessons with rhymes and short stories. You teach stubborn adults with this woman's poems.

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