Been having a thunk today, you know, it’s Sunday, got up, fed dogs, went back to bed and dozed whilst thoughts whizzed in and out of my mind. It’s Remembrance Sunday and as I lay in bed I thought about how lucky we are and how different life could have been. I don’t think many of the younger generation understand the significance of remembrance day, what sacrifices were given and the poppy and why it’s worn. This information came up on social media and goes to prove that every day is a school day as I was unaware of this, so am sharing it with you too just in case you didn’t know either…
“A lovely military man selling poppies stopped me today and asked if he could reposition mine – while doing so he told me that women should wear their poppy on their right side; the red represents the blood of all those who gave their lives, the black represents the mourning of those who didn’t have their loved ones return home, and the green leaf represents the grass and crops growing and future prosperity after the war destroyed so much. The leaf should be positioned at 11 o’clock to represent the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, the time that World War One formally ended. He was worried that younger generations wouldn’t understand this and his generation wouldn’t be around for much longer to teach them.” Courtesy of facebook status by Karen Lowton.
My father was a pilot with the RAF and flew the Battle Of Britain Memorial Flight for a number of years. I saw him fly the Spitfire, Hurricane and Lancaster and was lucky enough to see these planes close up and sit in them as a child. Dad came into the girls schools when they were younger and gave talks about the war, bringing in gas masks, old flight helmets and information leaflets about the Battle of Britain and its part in the war. There are so many stories to be shared, the pulling together of different races and religions to fight as one to preserve our freedom and rights. I do hope that we can pass this knowledge on to following generations so they don’t forget this part of our history via handing down family stories through talking at home and sharing them in the classroom and social media. The Dave put a status up on the old facebook because he got so fed up with folk not wearing their poppies, I quote: –
“Hmmmmm, people in the UK offended by poppies? I think “offended” wouldn’t quite sum up how they’d feel if the UK was not a free country. Every single person, no matter what race or religion, who lives, has lived, or intends to live in the UK needs to understand that these men and women, of many different races and religions, fought and died for them. So wear a fucking poppy!”
It does tick me off when folk are disrespectful of our older generation and the sacrifices of those who came before us. I have a small pin poppy which I bought last year but is too small really, but I am wearing it as I keep wrecking the paper ones whilst I wait for my new purchase of a beautiful broach via the Royal British Legion shop to wear in future. This doesn’t mean I’m opting out of donating to give to the charity instead of buying paper poppy now I’ll just pop donations in the collection boxes as and when. They have all kinds of poppy merchandise to wear, if you are like me and are a clumsy oaf who wrecks and washes the paper ones constantly so never has a decent one to wear – why not take a look round their shop.
Sharing this poem as it’s lovely too….
“Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.
Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!—An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime.—
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
In all my dreams before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.
If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,—
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.”
I saw this on the old t’internet and thought it lovely as it includes the animals who fought in the wars too – the film War Horse had me in bits!! Hope you like it too…