Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day & Poppies

Poppies in Our Yard on May 27, 2012
Photo by Amy LV

This poem is in the public domain.

Buddy Poppy Given to Hope on May 26, 2012
Photo by Amy LV

Click the arrow to hear me read this poem to you.

Students - In the United States, Memorial Day, once called Decoration Day, is a day to remember those who have died in service to our country.  Today many people will decorate the graves of their loved ones and many others will salute veterans in local parades.  Even more people will fly flags outside their homes, thinking about and silently thanking soldiers who have died.

"In Flanders Fields," by John McCrae, is one of America's most famous war poems, and today I am thinking about all who have given their lives in service in war.  My poem is just a quiet moment, a sitting and thinking moment in a cemetery or at the base of a statue, or even kneeling before a small flag or in front of a photograph.

My mother's father, Norman Dreyer, fought in World War II, and we were lucky that he came home.  Not all were so lucky.

You can read a little about Lieutenant John McCrae, writer of "In Flanders Fields," as well as the history of this poem and the symbolism of the poppy, here.  And you can listen to the poem below.

Here is McCrae's poem as a song.

If you would like to download free sheet music for "In Flanders Fields," click here.

No matter our countries, let us all sit quietly for a moment today, honoring the memories of all people worldwide and through history, all people who have died in the name of war. And let us show love.

Please share a comment below if you wish.
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  1. "In Flanders Field" is one of those poems that has haunted me since first reading, also because my grandfather was in the trenches in France in WWI. He came home and went on to have 13 children.

    Your poem is just as haunting, and so very beautiful.

  2. Amy,
    Thank you for your remembrances today. Reading In Flanders Fields and Memorial Day along with your commentary made me feel as though I'd been to church or a walk in the woods- a peaceful, pensive place.

  3. I am late, but wanted to say thank you Amy for your beautiful post. My father died in World War II & I never knew him really. I had a wonderful stepfather who also served in the war, was all over the world with the Army Corps of Engineers, was in the Battle of the Bulge, & would never speak of it. My uncles also served. It is a good thing to send a prayer or a thought for those who gave their lives, & also for those who fought & came back. We are all grateful for that.