Saturday, November 11, 2006

Remembrance Day

Aftermath
(March 1919)

Have you forgotten yet? ...

For the world's events have rumbled on since those gagged days,
Like traffic checked while at the crossing of city-ways:
And the haunted gap in your mind has filled with thoughts that flow
Like clouds in the lit heaven of life; and you're a man reprieved to go,
Taking your peaceful share of Time, with joy to spare.
But the past is just the same - and War's a bloody game ...
Have you forgotten yet? ...
Look down, and swear by the slain of the War that you'll never forget.Do you remember the dark months you held the sector at Mametz -
The nights you watched and wired and dug and piled sandbags on parapets?
Do you remember the rats; and the stench
of corpses rotting in front of the front-line trench -
And dawn coming, dirty-white, and chill with a hopeless rain?
Do you ever stop and ask, "Is it all going to happen again?"
Do you remember the hour of din before the attack -
And the anger, the blind compassion that seized and shook you
As you peered at the doomed and haggard faces of your men?
Do you remember the stretcher-cases lurching back
With dying eyes and lolling heads - those ashen-grey
Masks of the lads who once were keen and kind and gay?
Have you forgotten yet? ...
Look up, and swear by the green of the spring that you'll never forget.
Siegfried Sassoon
Photos taken today at the Remembrance Day ceremonies at the cenotaph in our city
World War I:
1. 628,736 Canadians served.
2. 66,573 died and 138,166 were wounded.
3. 2,818 were taken prisoner of war.
4. 175 merchant seamen died by enemy action.
World War II:
1. 1,031,902 Canadian men and 49,963 Canadian women served.
2. 44,927 died and 43,145 were wounded.
3. 8,271 were taken prisoner of war.
4. 1,146 merchant seamen died by enemy action.

5 comments:

  1. I had to memorize that poem when I was in school.
    We should never forget the sacrifices, bug and small, of our forefathers that insured our freedom for today.

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  2. Good for your teacher to pick such a meaningful poem. Was that in France? Those in Europe suffered greatly.

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  3. I love the pics that you took yesterday. Too bad I missed the whole thing...

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  4. It was when I liked in Barcelona and was in a British school. Mr Lacy had a lot of stories of the war passed on through his family.

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  5. Your poem of the Rememberance Day is sad but so true. I remember World War 2 so well, I was in Grade 8 when it was over. Many of my classmates lost fathers, uncles, brothers etc. Aurora had the highest casualty rate per population in all of Canada. When ever a telegram arrived at the train station to tell a famly of a lost or wounded loved one, my Dad received it and went to inform the family. He was really loved by all...

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