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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

lest we forget.

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. — Lt.-Col. John McCrae (1872 - 1918)

1 comment:

Berry Farmer said...

Dave, thanks.

The poem I remember from high school and most deeply affected me one long ago Remembrance Day:

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,

Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge, Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs

And towards our distant rest began to trudge. Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots

But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind; Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots

Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! – An ecstasy of fumbling, Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time; But someone still was yelling out and stumbling, And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime . . .

Dim, through the misty panes10 and thick green light, As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams, before my helpless sight, He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace Behind the wagon that we flung him in, And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;

If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs, Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud

Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues, My friend, you would not tell with such high zest

To children ardent for some desperate glory, The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est Pro patria mori.

by Wilfred Owen (killed in battle)