Remembrance Day

In the United States today is Veterans Day; in the Commonwealth Nation it is known as Remembrance Day; a day to remember those who have served. We celebrate on this day to remember the end of World War I.

In our nation World War I is little remembered; it was for the United States our entry into the world stage, but we fought only briefly, and its memory is not seared into the psyche of our nation like it is in the United Kingdom, France, or even Germany.

The late literary critic Paul Fussell, in his seminal work on the effects of World War I on society, The Great War in Modern Memory, perhaps of all who have written in recent years understood the impact on western society.

In the Commonwealth Nations it is sometimes known as “Poppy Day;” even today when there are no living veterans of the Great War, you will see men and women sporting a Red Poppy.  In the United States the VFW and other veterans organization handout Red Poppies, but fewer and fewer Americans know what the Red Poppy symbolizes or why we wear it.

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.

So remember all who have serve and what the Red Poppy symbolize on this Veterans Day.

 

Comments

  1. John Minehan says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_G4eq9Fudc

    And I can't help but wonder oh Willy McBride

    Do all those who lie here know why they died

    Did you really believe them when they told you the cause

    Did you really believe that this war would end wars

    Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame

    The killing and dying it was all done in vain

    Oh Willy McBride it all happened again

    And again, and again, and again, and again