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John McCrae     The poppy

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Poppies thrived on the battlefield soil churned up by bombs and soldiers.
It is not without reason that you always see poppies blooming in places where work is being done on roads, bridges and houses.
The soldiers have seen them blooming by the thousands from the trenches.
The poppy is also full of symbolism: the red leaf refers to blood, and the black heart of the flower also says enough.

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The name of John McCrae will be, forever, associated with his famous poem In Flanders Fields which was reportedly written the day after the funeral of a close friend who was killed at the second Battle of Ypres in May 1915.

Lt Alexis Helmer had been a former medical student of McCrae’s and his death affected him so much that he penned the poem as a tribute to the many fallen.

We Shall Keep the Faith

Oh! you who sleep in Flanders Fields,
Sleep sweet – to rise anew!
We caught the torch you threw
And holding high, we keep the Faith
With All who died.

We cherish, too, the poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led;
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies,
But lends a lustre to the red
Of the flower that blooms above the dead
In Flanders Fields.

And now the Torch and Poppy Red
We wear in honor of our dead.
Fear not that ye have died for naught;
We’ll teach the lesson that ye wrought
In Flanders Fields.

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