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THAT was the funny thing about grandpop's story. It had a head and a tail, all right; a beginning and an end, like they say. But still an important detail was missing, same as if in a jig-saw picture puzzle of Washington crossing the Delaware the piece with the general on it was lost.

This being Memorial Day was what reminded me of it; it being a day of remembrance of our soldiers and sailors. All the churches and different societies are putting new clean flags by the headstones up at Pine Hill. But we folks chipped in and got a special silk flag for grandpop's grave; even the kids saved up their pennies for it. New he'll have a pretty flag that will last till snow comes, anyway; that's what grandpop always used to say: "I'll last till the snow comes."

He did, too; he hung on 'way after Thanksgiving. That sure was going some, seeing that he was past eighty-seven. He got kind of wobbly there toward the last but he wouldn't let on. Of course he had a cane, been carrying one for years; but he always said the only reason he kept it was because all the swells carried them when he was a boy and he'd got the habit and couldn't quit.

His eyesight wasn't so good, either, when he got along past seventy-five. Naturally dad and me and the rest of the family expected it in a man of his years; but he wouldn't admit it for a minute, not grandpop. We had to be careful as the dickens because if we showed we thought he wasn't as spry as he used to be, he'd lay about him with that heavy cane of his and anybody or anything that got in the way was sure to get hurt.

Take for instance Roy, that's my younger boy, he used to play a trick on his great-grandpop that always got a smile out of dad or me because it showed up the way grandpop was still trying to fool us. Roy would saunter along the porch where grandpop was usually sitting; first he'd say hello to the old man and then he'd lean against a post with his hands in his pockets and stare down the road. Well sir, he wouldn't never do that for long before grandpop would speak up at him and say, "What are you looking at, boy?" And Roy would keep staring and yell so grandpop could hear: "Oh, I'm watching a frisky mare down the road a piece." Grandpop would look himself and then afte...

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