Dress Code


He came angry and mean in
A pretty package.
Pomp and circumstance
crowned in a high and tight
Yes, Sir! Yes, Ma’am!
Nothin’ like a man in uniform.
Batting baby blues
They way they do
When they slide
into your bed and into your life.
Pressed dress whites
A crumpled heap on the floor.
Gold medals and ribbons
Cuff links and patent leather
The groom wore white.
Sliced our wedding cake
with the sword slung on his hip.
Til Death do us part.
The Military opens its ranks
Wraps the wounded willing young.
A sultry Siren
Lures with promises
Glory and Honor and a Pension.
Buttons and Bars and Brass
The Uniform binds the broken
“Let The Journey Begin”
I married the man not the military,
I bear witness.
The man shattered when the uniform came off.

—Kelly Hedglin Bowen



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March 2023