November 11, 1998

 

Remembrance Day 1998

 

30

 

You will hear of wars

and rumours of wars,

but see to it that you are not alarmed.

Such things must happen,

but the end is still to come.

Nation will rise against nation,

and kingdom against kingdom.

There will be famines and earthquakes

in various places.

All these are the beginning of the birth pains.

 

Jesus Christ

Matthew 24:6-8

 

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

 

John McCrae

1872 – 1918

 

1918

 

relief

it must have shone like daylight

dawning after the too long night of fear

at last

an ending was in sight

to the “war to end all wars”

reality bitter

the hopeful optimism of distant sunny days

destroyed by endless days of carnage

death

and destruction

 

1945

 

shock

incredulity

thirty millions dead

and that just a conservative guess

warriors and citizens equ’ly mingle

where all is level

and beyond

where all is not

 

thirty millions dead

lives sacrificed, taken, and wasted

all too real a proof, if such is needed

of the evil that inhabits with us

this world awaiting peace

 

and if evil, then good

and if good, then God

 

lives that never more can live

until God’s final call

thrown aside, for good or evil

in mankind’s greatest struggle

 

1998

 

eighty years gone by

hope growing less hopeful

that wars would forever end

far fewer years since we last proved them wrong

countless deaths

injustice beyond recompense

how can these lives be pleased

by a single silent moment

and a poppy upon the breast

surely their blood cries out for more

 

for now

 

upon our perch of time

we see ever clearer the evil that died

and the good that against all hope

survived warriors now long dead

who died in vain

if only we forget

 

Satan’s evil demands the fighting

            and he is falling

God’s good demands sacrifice

            and He shall prevail

between the two lie all man’s choice