Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Veterans Day 2009 Plus 6 Days


For years I have looked at this statue, ultimately forging a memory. Recently I again remembered this soldier positioned on a corner, part of four military effigies chiseled into a stone monument. Perhaps Veterans Day six days ago jarred that distant impression or unearthed some mnemonic threads of location, time and place.

What seems appropriate is to tie the monument to those who served their countries. Lt. Colonel John McCrae of the Canadian Army wrote one of the most famous World War I poems, after experiencing war first hand at the battle of Ypres. His words became the catalyst to remember the war dead internationally and serves to symbolically link the thoughts by wearing a red poppy. Know that.

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.