Armistice Day: 1918

In Flanders fields.jpg

One hundred years ago, to-day, the guns fell silent on the Western Front. It was a time for rejoicing. The War to End All Wars was over. And yet, amid the cheering crowds,  there were those who were silent,  mourning for those who would not return.

In Flanders Fields

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.

John McCrae

For the story of Canadian physician and poet John McCrae and how he came to write this poem–perhaps the best-known of the Great War, see this podcast and transcription from Library and Archives, Canada.

Mrs Daffodil has discussed the melancholy question of how to mourn the dead of the Great War here and here.

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6 thoughts on “Armistice Day: 1918

  1. Dave Kingsbury

    In the true spirit of 1918 we should all resolve ‘Never Again’. Didn’t work then but perhaps with hindsight we might learn to exploit modern communication to greater effect … though I’m not holding my breath!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. chriswoodyard Post author

      A consummation devoutly to be wished! Mrs Daffodil, too, is not sanguine. And modern communications so often seem only to divide rather than unite. Those Imperial Russian couriers are particularly insidious.

      Like

      Reply

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