John MaCrae




 
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November 24th, 2004  
pattheoneuk
 
 

Topic: John MaCrae


Even though Rememberance has been and gone. I was recently reminded of some history.

On a trip to Belgium I went to a place called Essex Farm. For those that dont know, This was a Dressing Station during WW1. It was the workplace of a Canadian Army Doctor by the name of John MaCrae

A young friend and former student, Lieut. Alexis Helmer of Ottawa, had been killed by a shell burst just meters from where the two of them had recently been talking. McCrae had performed the funeral ceremony in the absence of the chaplain. The next day, sitting on the back of an ambulance parked near the dressing station McCrae vented his anguish by composing a poem.


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.