Ruckus Scooter Love

Ruckus Scooter Love
Scootin' For A Slower Pace of Life...

Monday, May 28, 2012

In Memoriam...

You may have seen them out in front of a storefront or on a street corner: veterans selling little red paper poppy flowers.

They are asking for a donation to veteran's organizations and in exchange, you receive this little red poppy in remembrance of the veterans who gave their lives for their country.

But many people do not realize the significance of the little red poppy flower and why it is tied into Memorial Day.

It comes from this poem, "In Flanders Fields", by Lt. Colonel John McCrae, MD, (1872-1918) serving in the Canadian Army.

He was serving as an Army field doctor during World War I and was inspired to write it on May 3, 1915, after presiding over the funeral of a friend and fellow soldier, Alexis Helmer.

Hastily scribbled on a scrap of paper, it was thrown away by him and later retrieved by another soldier, who eventually promoted it's publication in the London newspapers of the day:

In Flanders Fields

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.


  1. Beautiful post. Always a stirring poem.

  2. Having grown up in Canada I remember reciting In Flanders Fields in school. We recited it every year. And the poppies were always distributed for November 11th (Remembrance Day)

    I am surprised at how different the poppies are that are handed out. The Canadian ones look totally different than the ones handed out by the Legion and veterans here.

    A good reminder of the occasion. Thank you for posting it.

  3. Thanks for sharing that poem. It reminds me of our trip to Belgium a couple of years back, which involved a visit to one of many US war cemeteries there. You can read about it on my personal blog. Flanders Field is one of the smaller cemeteries. It's 6 acres with fewer than 400 graves. The one we saw was 57-acres where 7,992 are buried. Pretty powerful stuff to see.