On Poppies

I wear a red poppy.

Yes, it’s a political act and I’ve no idea why people pretend it isn’t. I’ve stood up for peoples’s right not to wear one, or to wear a white one, and would happily do so again. My choice is to wear a red one.

I wear my poppy for my great-grandfather, this year more than usual, because it is 100 years, almost to the day, that he died in the First World War. He left behind a wife and four children.

I wear my poppy for the American branch of the family, who were founded by two GI War Brides, and have had servicemen since, including my cousin who met his wife while on service.

I wear my poppy for my friends that joined up straight from school. They’ve now mostly served their time and left, and nothing bad happened to them, but it’s good to know the British Legion are there to help if it had.

I wear my poppy for the three lads I met on the Manchester train who were on weekend leave from Army training, because Lord love ’em, they might need help and I can’t trust the government to be there for them.

That’s why I wear a poppy.