Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Let Us Not Forget... 11/11/11

Halloween flashed by... As we enter into a new month, it keeps getting darker earlier, and nights are dark longer... we slow down, reflect and remember deceased loved ones on All Saints' Day (November 1st) and All Souls' Day (November 2nd).

Noticed lately as you watch the news on TV, that the anchors are wearing their red poppies? Stroll along the streets of Toronto and you'll start to  see them pinned on coats or blazers or hats (yes, yours truly has done that in the past and will do it again this year).  Yes, Remembrance Day is coming. Let us not forget...

If you are within the vicinity of the University of Toronto, drop by on Friday for the Remembrance Day service by Solders' Memorial Tower as this year is 11/11/11.

Growing up in Toronto, it was a tradition into high school years to recite on Remembrance Day In Flanders Fields poem written by John McCrae, an Alumni of Victoria College at University of Toronto. Those of you, who attended my Haunted Yorkville, U of T & Queen's Parks Walks, would have seen his haunting poem carved on a special wall close by Solders' Memorial Tower. If you've had wedding photographs taken nearby Soldiers' Memorial Tower you might have stood right by it and didn't see it as it's fading with the weathering of time and the elements...

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. 
                        - John McCrae (November 30, 1872- January 28, 1918

While you're there, get into the long line-up and go through this beautiful wooden doorway. Climb up the stairs to the Soldiers' Memorial Tower Room. You'll find it will be time well spent chatting with the remaining veterans.  Take the time to examine the treasured items housed up there... Take the time to contemplate how much has been sacrificed for our freedom...

Thank you for remembering to
wear your red poppy 

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