The line of naked men was long, snaking along a corridor
in the recruitment centre, with whispered jokes and camaraderie,
then the naked line was shorter,
then just one naked man standing awkwardly alone,
in the line of now clothed young men.
He fought flaming cheeks as they studied him punctiliously.
“No, you won’t do,” the army medical team announced. “Heart murmur.”
A great escape, that. The boys who went to war never quite came home.
But that heart murmured along for another three quarters of a century,
serving his country by staying alive..
My dad had a lot of stories.
Apparently I’ll be working through my grief setting them down as poems.