I never understood what it meant. I never understood why there was such sadness, such solemnity. For me, the bright colour of the flower was a jolly juxtaposition to the grey of november, sky streaked with the tears of old men I had no connection to. It was an opportunity to fold felt poppies and blow kisses with exaggerated voluptuousness, another thing I didn’t grasp the weight of until much later.

I hated that it fell on my mum’s birthday.

“Can’t they use another?” I asked once.
“I’m very happy to share it.” She said, her smile heavy with perspective.