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He squirmed inside the wing chair
Staring at his cup of tea,
Prying eyes were masked in smiles;
Voices chattered idly.

He'd armed for battle in his youth
Standing bravely through his dread
Shrapnel left him wounded
Worse, his comrades all were dead!

He hid then in the camouflage
Squatting in the marshy reeds,
His days dragged foraging onion greens;
Bitter sweet his mock reprieve.

He searched one day the leek roots
Grubbing in the ravaged ground
Starving for some sustenance yet
Hollow bones were all he found.

For years he'd stayed reclusive,
Hiding from the enemy
Until the war was over
He'd served his country honorably.

He sat amid the dinner guests
Refusing bread and wine,
His pale eyes skimmed the tabled feast
Hoping he would find...

And there they were awaiting him.
Behind the bowl of peas!
His first words uttered quietly,
Were "Pass the onions, please."

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