by T. E. Taylor
Once more, they come
from their forgotten places
unearthed and put on show like relics,
caps and blazers brand them
as belonging in another time.
Pipes and drumbeats
pump new vigour into creaking limbs
a bugler summons up the dead
to be remembered. Old men weep
and feel ashamed to have survived.
November hurls its tears into their faces
bouquets of leaves around their feet
and blows a wild Last Post
as cars and coaches suck them back
It matters to them
to have done their duty by their pals
but there’s another reason why they came:
to count for something, even for a day,
to march, just one more time
into the light.