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Saturday, May 28, 2005

In Flanders Fields

by John McCrae
(1872 - 1918)

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, the author of In Flanders Fields, was a Canadian born in Guelph, Ontario in 1872. Trained as a medical doctor, he served in the Boer War in South Africa and when Canada entered World War I he volunteered for duty in the Canadian Army. McCrae served in combat on the Western Front and was then transfered to the medical corps. In Flanders Fields was first published in the British magazine Punch in 1915 and quickly became the most famous poem of World War I. John McCrae died of pneumonia in an army field hospital in Belgium in 1918.

Photo courtesy of Veterans Affairs Canada

Page Copyright © 2005 by Chuck Nugent

1 comment:

Tony said...

There is a wonderful song adaptation of In Flanders Fields along with a stirring dance interpretation on YouTube. It appears to be one of the top viewed videos over a 2 week period. Take a look: