Poetry

The Pipping

for Daniel And as she fastened his bright new pips, her knuckled fingers fumbling on the butterfly clips behind the stiff epaulettes, she loved this fine young man, his red and blue mess jacket still fresh with all the tailor’s starch in it; so much did he remind her of her own true love— how he too had stood fine and trim in his formal kit: midnight blue, red trouser stripes, gold shell-bursts on the collar tabs, medal ribbons from ’45, and the same size jacket at forty he’d worn at twenty-one. “Young man …” she would have said, but…

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