Saturday, 5 November 2011

Poppy Appeal

Selling poppies in St Martins Lane
At the end of the Second World War civilians wanted to remember the men and women who had given their lives for peace and freedom. An American War secretary, Monica Michael, inspired by the poetry of John McCrae, began selling poppies to raise money for ex-Service men and women. And so the tradition began.

In Flanders' Fields
John McCrae, 1915 

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. 
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