Write Again . . . The poppies blow

Published 6:04 pm Friday, November 9, 2018

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.


The author of this poem, Lt. Col. John McCrae, a member of the first Canadian contingent, died in France on Jan. 28, 1918, after four years of service on the western front.

At eleven in the morning, on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, all was quiet on the western front.

The most horrific war, in the history of the world at that time, was over.

The “war to end all wars.” It was finally over “over there.”

Even though the United States didn’t enter the war until 1917, the losses incurred by the Yanks were staggering.

In Europe, much of one generation of young men were lost. Man’s insensate folly wrought death and destruction on a scale never seen before.

President Woodrow Wilson spent months in post-war Europe espousing his 14-points, and joining with other leaders in establishing the League of Nations.

The League became a reality, but the United States never ratified it. Conservative forces in Congress successfully opposed our becoming a member.

So many, many years ago.

And “In Flanders fields the poppies blow …”