Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Walkabout Wednesday in the UK

DL went to the UK, and all I got were these pictures.



DL London

Well, that’s not exactly true.  He ordered me a poppy.  The poppy will be sent to me after the installation is removed, after Armistice Day.

poppy legend

History Lesson for Today:
Veteran’s Day (nee Armistice Day) is November 11th each year.  It is to commemorate the cease fire on the western front in 1918, on the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month."  This is when the final poppy will be placed. Each of the ceramic poppies represents a British military fatality during WWI. 


DL knew this would be the perfect gift, as both of my grandfathers served in WWI—one with the US infantry and one with the 2nd Central Ontario Regiment.

Why poppies?  According to this website, poppies grew in abundance along the western front.  So prevalent were they, that Canadian Lt. Col. John McCrae would write the premiere wartime poem:

In Flanders Fields

By John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row by row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard among 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 yea break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
                    In Flanders fields.
  When I taught middle school, I used this poem to teach symbolism.  It has since become one of my favorites.  Looking forward to my poppy—thanks, DL!


Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

i memorized in flanders fields my freshman year of high school and had to recite it... it has stayed with me all these years. what a sweet gift. a poppy is much better than a cock.

Art and Sand said...

What a lovely poem and background story.

Mason Jar Love said...

Um, wait, not a single joke about "The Cock" ...


Karen said...

Those poppies are amazing.I never knew the story behind Veterans Day. When you see all of those poppies and think about each one representing a lost soldier it's very sad. The price of war is way to high.

Cheryl in Wisconsin said...

Had to look up 'free house'. These buildings are so charming. Tell DL to set up a charter trip now that he knows where he's going over there, and take us all for a tour.

Karen Feral Turtle said...

What a beautiful post Kirby. Thanks for sharing such great pictures! I learned that poem in elementary school. We were one of the lucky families that had our grandpa return from the war to carry on his name. Bless them all!

Heidi @ Decor & More said...

What a sweet amazing gift!! You're a lucky chica!
xo Heidi

karen@somewhatquirky said...

Poppies are a favorite of mine. Unfortunately, I kill them. A ceramic one would be fantastic. DL's quite the romantic, eh?

andi filante said...

Yes, I was waiting for something about "The Cock" as well... Love your new banner!


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