Sunday, 7 November 2010

Lest We Forget

In Flanders Fields

By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918) Canadian Army

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Being an army brat, I have attended many, many Remembrance Sunday Parades in several countries on various camps. My father was always on parade. I am always struck by that two minute silence because no matter what or where, the traffic and throngs always come comes to a complete standstill. The eeriness, especially on a cold, English November morning, makes it always seems to me, that the entire world has stopped.

Old soldiers never die
They simply fade they say
Is that the price I ask myself
That soldiers have to pay?

Bugle notes and drum beat
Flash of sun on brass
He hears the call as comrades all
Tramp the long march past

Warriors fading quickly
Like a weak pale winter sun
Bowed and creeping slowly
Life's race is all but run

The red poppy leaves are wrinkled
One by one they fall
Soldier, can you answer still
When the bugle notes do call

Play the music gently
No harsh notes sound, I ask
For the poppy leaves are falling
Glory days now past


In memory: The Queen lays a wreath at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday

The Cenotaph in London's Whitehall where thousands of veterans marched past the memorial

Let us never forget
let us educate our children so that they know never to forget