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This poem is taken from PN Review 32, Volume 9 Number 6, July - August 1983.

The Hussar's Story Charles Johnston

      "I was twenty-five, and had still a stage to do
before getting my squadron in the Guard Hussars.
The front was quiet, and so to fill in time
I went as A.D.C. to Corps Headquarters
at some unpronounceable castle in Volhynia.
And there one afternoon we were lunching late
to celebrate the birthday of a comrade-
when suddenly appeared before me a Sergeant
of the security corps, saluted briskly
and announced that at the telegraph bureau
a message was arriving: Personal
for Corps Commander. I went there and found
coils of tape, like ticking vermicelli,
which said what we already knew-because
although cut off from Russia, insulated
in our cocoon of discipline and tradition,

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