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WWI Photography Catalog

The Fine Print

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John, when I saw the group portrait and knew you would choose individuals to highlight, I chose my own before scrolling to see who you chose.

The guy in the middle is at attention, that position where military folks are acknowledging the presence of a superior.

His feet are joined at the heels and spread at the prescribed 45-degree angle. His arms are at his side and hands slightly cupped, shoulders back and eyes forward.

While no less weary-looking than his cohorts, he is attentive to detail in wishing to appear as a soldier would. In my mind, he is seeking to maintain his honor even in defeat.

While there is nothing more horrific than the intentional killing we seem unable to grow past, I do recognize this one person's effort to retain a certain dignity even in the midst of the nightmare.

John Ptak

Yea, you're right Rick, the guy in the middle did wake up and pull himself together. The story is in the shoulders and in the feet. Good call. My guess too is that they've all been awake for a long time.

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