This is a World War I postcard from my collection; it is postmarked 1918. A young lady looks at the picture of her soldier and says, "My hero." In the background is her boyfriend in a trench with a barbed-wire parapet. His pick and shovel are nearby and, as he rolls up his sleeves, he says, "If she could see me now."

Many postcards, like this one, interjected a bit of humor into the war; others were simply mawkish and sentimental with verses from popular songs and poems. Popular too were the beautiful "silks," finely embroidered cards handmade in France and Belgium.

Jesse Pope

The Call

Who's for the trench--
Are you, my laddie?
Who'll follow French--
Will you, my laddie?
Who's fretting to begin,
Who's going out to win?
And who wants to save his skin--
Do you, my laddie?

Who's for the khaki suit--
Are you, my laddie?
Who longs to charge and shoot--
Do you, my laddie?
Who's keen on getting fit,
Who means to show his grit,
And who'd rather wait a bit--
Would you, my laddie?

Who'll earn the Empire's thanks--
Will you, my laddie?
Who'll swell the victor's ranks--
Will you, my laddie?
When that procession comes,
Banners and rolling drums--
Who'll stand and bite his thumbs--
Will you, my laddie?