Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Poppies

Linda Granfield. Toronto, ON: Stoddart Kids, 2001
The poppy -- a flower for remembrance. Blood-red, it is at once a symbol of sacrifice and a hope for the future. The flocked red plastic pin with black centre poppy that Canadians start wearing as soon as the Halloween gear is stowed away, has been offered for sale by the Royal Canadian Legion since the 1920's.  
 
Remembrance Day November 11th at 11:00 am we will pause in our work and play and pay tribute to those brave souls who put their lives on the line for all of us who live in freedom.
 
All Canadians are familiar with the poem "In Flanders Fields" by John McCrae, a doctor in the first World War from Guelph, Ontario who wrote the poem after his friend was killed in the battle of Ypres, France, 1915.


In this video by Poetryanimations,
we see a picture of John McCrae seem to perform his own poem.
If you watch this video at Youtube, you can read the extensive notes underneath the video. To visit Youtube, simply click on either the video title or the Youtube symbol within the frame.



I don't know how I missed knowing this before, but apparently this poem has been made into a song!
Even if you are familiar with the poem, please listen to the song -- it is quite beautiful.



Remembrance Day is always a very sombre and sad time for those who feel the pain for those who have suffered and are still suffering because of war's devastation. But the symbol of the poppy is one of hope. It is afterall, a part of nature, it has a graceful and strong beauty able to withstand the turmoil that humankind inevitably creates.

Here are some of Claude Monet's paintings of poppy fields.
It seems he must have admired the beauty of these flowers too.




And now, although it may be entirely inappropriate. I am going to include an imaginary character from a television show who is wearing a poppy.  I am actually feeling quite sad about this character right now because of the way in which the scriptwriters chose to write him out of the series. I would like to remember Lucas North from Spooks / MI-5 as he was in the first episode in which he appeared in season 7.

Richard Armitage when he was Lucas North


5 comments:

tyme_4_t said...

Hey Phylly - fantastic find on the John McCrae video - very haunting.

BTW I have also used the pic of Lucas & Adam from spooks with their poppies as a backdrop - so no worries there!

In fact, I think that episode of [spooks] (7.1) actually illustrated the importance of remembering and that nothing or no one should stand in the way of remembrance of those who sacrificed and those who continue to heed the call.

Lest We Forget...

phylly3 said...

Thanks tyme_4_t! You are right about that episode being very appropriate indeed. I think I will watch it again on Remembrance Day.
I am curious about where you have used that picture though. Do you have a website I don't know about? Or did you use it in a real ceremony?
Anyway thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment!

Avalon said...

"Poppies...Poppies...This will put them to sleep!"

Remember this?

TeeTotallyNot said...

I've had Remembrance Sunday (and Armistice Day) in my head for weeks... even though I'm German (?) and I've been meaning to make a Spooks 'Fallen Heroes' wallpaper series for AGES! (only one I got done so far was Ros)
Thanks for the virtual kick up me a***... We should not forget... neither fictional heroes nor real ones. Otherwise (RL) history will repeat itself...
I will include Lucas. :)

phylly3 said...

@Avalon -- You know, I had to google that phrase because it wasn't familiar to me. How sad is that? Now I know it was from "The Wizard of Oz"! My children are more familiar with that movie than I am because I only saw it as an adult. I remember the beginning and the end quite well, but the middle part I don't think I've ever had the chance to sit through without interruption. Anyway, thanks for that reference. I should probably add it to the post!
@TeeTotallyNot -- I would love to see that artwork when you are done! There are an awful lot of "fallen heroes" from Spooks!