Wednesday, May 03, 2017

In Flanders Fields

On this day, one hundred and two years ago, a Canadian soldier, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, penned this poem. He was on the front lines at the second battle of Ypres in Belgium. The day before, his best friend had been killed by an enemy artillery round. Later that day, under the cover of darkness, his friend was buried.

On May 3, Lt.Col. McCrae wrote this poem to describe the scene and his feelings:

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

Let us not forget the sacrifices forced upon our soldiers, sailors and pilots by the stupid blunders of politicians, demigods and despots of bygone years. Let us think long and hard before we commit more of our young people to be sacrificed on the altar of the god of war.

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