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Ode to the Diminished Dollar

Updated on June 23, 2019
vocalcoach profile image

Writing provides me with a way to release pent-up emotions. Through poetry, I express my feelings, dreams, and gratitude.


The value of a dollar is social, as it is created by society. Ralph Waldo Emerson

In the year 1892 the first dollar bill was issued. As of 2017, there were currently 12.1 billion one-dollar bills in circulation worldwide

Thoughts of a Dollar Bill

My life as a dollar is shrinking each day

And if it continues I'll soon lose my way

I've tried, how I've tried to give all I'm worth

But my value is not what it was at my birth

I remember the time I brought smiles to a child

Now nobody wants me I'm tossed or just filed

Do you know what it's like to be needed no more?

To be crumbled and wadded and thrown to the floor?

To fall from a higher position in life?

My friends, let me tell you it cuts like a knife

The Diminished Value Of A Dollar Bill

Now I'm crumbled and wadded and thrown to the floor.
Now I'm crumbled and wadded and thrown to the floor. | Source

The Dollar Could Once Clothe The Poor

I clothed an old man to keep out the cold.
I clothed an old man to keep out the cold. | Source

My brother, the five, is starting to feel

He's losing his worth we just don't fill the bill

I long for the days men would work for my clan

My confidence glowed I was part of a plan

Then there was a time the poor could be fed

I contributed food and plenty of bread

I clothed an old man to keep out the cold

In those days, you see, a dollar was gold

And when Christmas came was the best time of all

I was stuffed in a stocking right next to the ball

Trees Have As Much Right To Our Planet As We Do

Trees should be free and not destroyed.  Trees may make money but we can't eat money.
Trees should be free and not destroyed. Trees may make money but we can't eat money. | Source

Now I have learned I come from a tree

This makes me sad 'cause a tree should be free

To grow and to live and do what trees do

And keep our air clean and every sky blue

My number is up I'll soon be replaced

There will be no more dollars to spend or to waste

And if you should happen to find an old dollar

Remember that once It was worth a big holler.

Never forget me I've done all I can

I tried, but still failed, to bring peace to each man

Replace The Dollar Bill?

On November 29, 2012, a House subcommittee met to consider replacing the dollar bill. This action took place after the seventh Government Accountability Office report on the subject. The latest report claimed that switching to dollar coins would save $4.4 billion over thirty years.

However, according to polls, few Americans want to give up dollar bills. Recent budgets passed by Congress have included provisions to prevent the Treasury Department from spending any of its funds to redesign the one dollar bill, largely because of potential cost impacts on the vending machine industry.

A Few Facts About The One Dollar Bill

  • Paper type - 75% cotton and 25% linen
  • In 1862: The first one-dollar bill was issued as a Legal Tender Note (United States Note) with a portrait of Salmon P. Chase, the Secretary of the Treasury under President Abraham Lincoln.
  • In 1929, all currency was changed to its current size.
  • For the most part, the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing will redeem mutilated dollar bills as long as you still have more than half of the note.
  • A 2002 study found that 94 percent of bills are contaminated with bacteria (mostly benign) and seven percent with dangerous pathogens, such as those that cause pneumonia and staph infections.
  • Scientific research conducted in 2009 found that 90 percent of U.S. bills have been contaminated by cocaine
  • The inclusion of “In God We Trust” on all United States currency was required by law in 1955. The national motto first appeared on paper money in 1957.

The Dollar Bill Test

While it's true that the dollar bill "ain't what she used to be" you can test your refrigerator and freezer doors using the diminished dollar. Here's all you need to do:

  • First you open the refrigerator or freezer door.
  • Then place a dollar bill between the seal and the door.
  • Shut the door.
  • Pull the dollar bill out of the door.
  • As you are pulling out the dollar bill you should feel some tension or resistance.
  • If you don't feel tension that means your seal needs to be replaced.
  • Repeat this test along the entire seal.

The man who will use his skill and constructive imagination to see how much he can give for a dollar, instead of how little he can give for a dollar, is bound to succeed.

— Henry Ford

Interesting History About the Dollar Bill

How Do You Feel About The Dollar Bill?

See results

Treat each federal dollar as if it was hard earned; it was - by a taxpayer. Donald Rumsfeld

© 2016 Audrey Hunt


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    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      4 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      Thank you very much! So glad you like my poetry.


      I know, it's been too long. Working on my book about singing gives me little time for traveling. But don't give up on me!

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Two years already, and you still haven't visited Spanish Fork again?

    • Brenda Arledge profile image


      4 months ago from Washington Court House


      I love these 3 poems.

      I have posted this wonderful piece of your work on a page called Poets with a voice.

      Thank you for sharing your talent.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      12 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      I've heard that the dollar is worth more in India. Thanks for contributing to my article. I've enjoyed your comments.

    • swalia profile image

      Shaloo Walia 

      12 months ago from India

      Lovely poem and interesting 'dollar' facts. Compared to our currency, dollar is still quite strong!!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      17 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      I remember those days too. My grandkids could hardly believe it. Personally, I don't see the need for all the symbolism on the dollar bill. Thanks, Lori!

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 

      17 months ago from Pacific Northwest

      Interesting. I've always found all the symbolism on bills rather creepy and mysterious. I remember when I could go to the movies, get a burger andmfries, and a good amount of penny candy with a buck.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      23 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      I certainly do remember penny candy. I also remember going to the local theater to see a double feature, shorts, and cartoons for 10 cents.

      I wrote this hub when I went to the dollar store. This particular location offered practically nothing for a dollar. Thanks for being here and enjoy your weekend (if you don't have to work.)

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      23 months ago from Houston, Texas

      This was fun to read Audrey and certainly different from your normal posts. The dollar has lost value over the years but so has the penny. Remember penny candy? (Smile)

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      2 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Elijah corrupts! We witness this every day. Thanks for your additional comments.

    • The0NatureBoy profile image

      Elijah A Alexander Jr 

      2 years ago from Washington DC

      If my understanding of prophecy is correct, it is supposed to happen before the end of 80 years after the nation of Israel returned to their homeland which was 1948, I'm 73 and am aurally looking forward to it because that will be the only way we will ever have world peace. MONEY CORRUPTS!!!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      2 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      I've heard that in the future, money will be obsolete and replaced by a chip or tattoo. I'm glad I won't be around. :) Thank you for being here and adding your informative comments to my article.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      2 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Nadine May

      Thanks for this information about what the dollar is worth against other currencies. So glad to see you here my friend.

    • The0NatureBoy profile image

      Elijah A Alexander Jr 

      2 years ago from Washington DC

      Thank you Audrey, I wasn't aware of some of that information. You presented it's dilemma in well written verse worthy of remembering for people whose needs are centered around it.

      There is more truth to how, not only the dollar bill but money in general, is loosing its value. Prophetically money will be completely eliminated for a mark, number or name as either an implanted chip or tattoo above the right eye or in the right hand for scanning to obtain whatever anyone needs. That will be in place just after the destruction of the United States of America somewhere around he year 2021 as my hub The USA In bible Prophecy reveals.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 

      3 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Love your dollar story in poetry. We still need to multiply our R currency 12 to 13 times if we want to buy a Dollar, just to give you some idea what the Dollar is worth against other currencies.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 

      3 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      That will be great!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      Thank you so much for helping me with the last line of my poem. Made the change. Works so much better. I will be sure to give you a heads up the next time I visit Spanish Fork. Would love to meet you and your family.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 

      3 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      "to bring peace to all men" allows for "to bring peace to each man" which will rhyme. And, the next time you come to Spanish Fork, plan to come to Lindon. It's not that far away! Let us know and I will provide our address and phone.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thanks Nadine. I had no idea that 90 percent of U.S. bills are contaminated by cocaine. Unbelievable!


      Yes, it's sad that the currency is diminishing in value. I still stop to pick up pennies on the road. They do add up!


      Wow! To be able to buy several vegetables with just a dollar is amazing!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Value changes...our Canadian dollar is low now but this, too will pass. I am glad I can go to the local market here in Cambodia and get several veggies for dinner with one dollar. One pineapple for example is 30 cents and they peel it for me, too.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Enjoyed your poem and how true it is. Our lowest currency denomination is the rupee today and we have had it in coins for decades now ever since the printing of one rupee note was stopped. In fact, we have notes only for rupees ten and above today.

      It is sad to see the value of one's currency diminishing today.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 

      3 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Loved reading your poems....I never knew this but can well believe it that: Scientific research conducted in 2009 found that 90 percent of U.S. bills have been contaminated by cocaine.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      I've always wanted to go to Australia! I agree that it's sad to see how money is declining. So glad you stopped by. Have a wonderful day (or night.)


      Hi Kim. How is everything? So nice of you to read my little poem. Appreciate your being here. Thanks.


      Hi Thelma,

      Thanks for reading my poem about the diminishing dollar bill. Great to see you and enjoy your day.


      Hi Martie

      Good question. I didn't realize South Africa only had coins. I wonder if the US will eventually do the same. Thanks for enjoying my poem my friend. Happy thoughts to you,



      By golly you're right. I forgot about the vending machines. :) Thanks for being here and for the thumbs up!

      Enjoy your day,


    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 

      3 years ago from Long Island, NY

      Ha ha, the vending machine industry will keep the dollar alive!

      I thought of that when I got to your sidebar about "Replace The Dollar Bill". But then I realize the bill may be saved, but the dollar itself is doomed. Your poem was magnificent!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      Thanks Sha for adding your great comments. The days of $.35 matinee are likely gone forever but what fun those times were. My grandkids almost don't believe that at one time this small amount would buy a ticket to the matinee and goodies to boot!

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      3 years ago from South Africa

      I wonder why do people put a higher value on paper money than on coins? After all, gold comes in coins :) Down here everything less than R10 comes in coins. $1 today equals R14.42. With R14.42 one can only buy one bread plus one liter (2.1 pt) milk.

      Lots of humor in this poem. Thank you vocalcoach :)

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 

      3 years ago from Germany and Philippines

      What a wonderful poem! So true what you have written here. Thanks for sharing.

    • ocfireflies profile image


      3 years ago from North Carolina


      How true and sad. So nicely done. Thank You.


    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Dream on

      What a marvelous extension you have provided to my poem. Only you with your unending creativeness could add so much wisdom. I particularly love the line "we've built everything you've ever seen."

      Ms Dora,

      The dollar is diminishing in value world-wide. Other coins are gone completely. Thank you.


      I often forget to wash my hands after handling money and no telling where money has been. Thanks my friend.

      Enjoy your day.


    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

      3 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Here in Australia the 1 and 2 dollars have been coins for quite a time, while there are no longer any cent coins lower than 5c, and it is sad that what used to have quite a value is worth so little now.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      3 years ago from Central Florida

      Yep. I remember the $0.35 Saturday matinee. A dollar could get you a movie ticket and munchies to boot!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Blonde Logic

      You're absolutely right my friend. The dollar holds a different meaning depending on where you live. Interesting how the R$1.00 works in Brazil. Thanks for being here and have a wonderful day!

      Hi Mar,

      Love your opening sentence. (Doesn't make any cents.) So clever and cute. Glad you liked the song. My spirits are always lifted when you come to visit me. Bit hugs.



      When I was a kid even the lowly quarter bought me a movie ticket, popcorn, soda and penny candy. :) Our family was poor but heck we kids never suspected. Fun times.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      3 years ago from Central Florida

      Audrey, this poem is clever, fun and sad all the same. I found it quite astounding that 90% of US dollar bills are tainted with cocaine. Wow!

      I can see how bills can carry bacteria and germs. Even knowing that, I think it would be hard to get used to carrying the coin equivalent.

    • vespawoolf profile image

      Vespa Woolf 

      3 years ago from Peru, South America

      What an interesting them for a poem! The facts about the one dollar bill were fascinating. One of the lessons I learned is to wash your hands after handling money!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Great rhythm and rhyme depicting the lowering value of money and suggesting a comparison to the value of life. (The Eastern Caribbean dollar is now a coin.) Hopefully, the dollar won't take us down with it (smile!)

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 

      3 years ago

      A dollar today is a green piece of paper to many.

      In the world of credit cards and debit cards not even a thought.

      A dirty bill carrying thousands of germs.

      Wrinkled and worn.

      To me it's something really special.

      A symbol of America's wealth and freedom.

      Memories of being a young boy.

      Reminded money is not a toy.

      A sign of wealth and prosperity.

      Those who have it had to earn it.

      Those who don't dream about it more.

      I wish those who desperately need it.

      Receive it with a little note.

      Please use me with care.

      I am property of the United States government.

      I can help pay a bill and put food on your table.

      I can be exchanged for gas that can help your car drive anywhere.

      I can be saved for years or gambled away foolishly.

      I can be hated, loved more than anyone in the world.

      I'm just one dollar.

      I don't buy what I use to.

      People can say what they want.

      Put me together with other dollars.

      I can help pay for boats that travel on water.

      Cars that take you to every destination.

      Planes that fly you around the world.

      With my help we have built every building you have ever seen.

      I can make fortunes and drive people crazy.

      I can still put a smile on a child's face

      I have a history and stand for many things.

      Share me on Facebook and see how fast I can move.

      I wish you the best and a happy life.

      Would it be to much to ask?

      Give me to your family and friends.

      So I can be respected and appreciated.

      Above all else.

      Stand for something beautiful.

      Not just now but for many years to come.

      Thank you sharing an important hub.I will always see a dollar as 100 little pennies tucked inside that wonderful paper.

    • Laurinzo Scott profile image

      LJ Scott 

      3 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Great hub Audrey, and I often quip about how at about ten years old in 1975... I would be entertained all day :

      10 cent comic

      10 cent bag of chips

      15 cent soda

      and the rest in penny candy .....oooooh Boy This poor generation!!!

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      always exploring

      I had a feeling I'd find you here :) I find that my dollars can buy quite a bit...I go to the dollar store here in Nashville where nothing is over a dollar.


      So Australia hasn't seen a one dollar bill in 20 years. Wow! And now the five is the lowest denomination. I didn't know this and I imagine a few others weren't aware of this as well. Thanks John for sharing.


      So happy to know you found my little poem fun to read. Just the reaction I was hoping for. Thanks so much.

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 

      3 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      This subject just doesn't make cents to me... :(

      Cool song - fits perfectly, sweet Audrey - love anything you write, truly.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 

      3 years ago from Brazil

      Having been out of the states for quite some time, it would seem odd to now hold a dollar. It's a piece of paper which means different things to different people.

      Your poem is a wonderful reflection of its changing value, and role.

      Here in Brazil we have a R$1.00 coin (Brazilian real). However in shops they will round up or down as our lowest coinage is 5 centavos.

      Hope you're having a great weekend.

    • vocalcoach profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Hunt 

      3 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.


      Your grandaughters are so precious. I'm sure they inherited their grandmas's great attitude. Thanks Linda.


      I had to laugh out loud reading your comments. I agree...send those dollars to me. :)


      No kidding...the dollar may not buy as much as it once did but I'm grateful for everyone I have. I found the following - it made me laugh:

      If John Kerry had a dollar for every time he bragged

      about serving in Vietnam -

      oh wait,

      he does.

      - Ann Coulter

      Thanks Bill

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      This is a wonderfully with poem, Audrey. I thoroughly enjoyed it. In Australia we did away with one and two dollar notes maybe 20 years ago. $5.00 is our lowest denomination note.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Calhoun 

      3 years ago from Western NC

      Awesome! The almighty dollar...shrinking from its almighty throne. LOL.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      3 years ago from Southern Illinois

      This was a fun read! I had no idea the dollar might be a thing of the past. I like the dollar even though it doesn't buy much anymore.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      What a fun read, and oh, how true! Still, I know a few people who still think the dollar is worth a great deal. :)

      hugs from Olympia

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      3 years ago from USA

      Great combination of creativity and interesting facts. And if anyone gets tired of their dollars, they can send them my way. I'll appreciate the dollar.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 

      3 years ago from Orlando, FL

      My granddaughters think the dollar is worth a whole lot. I hope their way of thinking lasts for quite awhile.


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