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Timid lads euphonious
in their crisp military skins

just the look of them brings
on fawning kisses, and swoons

from gloved women; this
is the time before the end

of corsets, and these young
boys fantasize about how many

strings hold these young girls
constrained. How many hooks

hinder their bird-like faces. How
many ways the shape of their

winking voices form the burrowed
syllables of their names.

War is heroism, soft kisses,
and half dragged cigarettes

thick with sweet tobacco.
It's a football game, ready

to be quickly won. These boys
know nothing of Germany, Italy,

or France, but they will swivel
their bodies into the crooked

channels, and trenches. They will
emerge with dirt smeared over

their eyes, and blood on their cheeks.
They will fight, and die,

while the curious women they left
behind will only be left to wonder.