Forgetting what the poppies told

We talked of fields where poppies flew
where blood had seeped into the soil,
where once was ash now flowers grew,
where once were trenches grass was green,
and blackbirds sang where poppies flew,
and in the breeze perfumed so sweet
the children played, and all felt new.
But now when kids have aged and died
In scent of gunsmoke we once knew,
we talk of honor and revenge
of winning fields where poppies flew.

Girl wearing the poppy wreath by Orest Kiprensky

For Gillena at toads I write the fold, I have approached this in a similar way as a rondeau, and of course inspired by Flander’s field.
—-
April 28, 2018

11 responses to “Forgetting what the poppies told

  1. Thank you for writing today Björn.
    The remorse, the regret, all results of destructive weapons. The symbols, the memorabalia, reminds us to look forward with peace instead; all strong themes in your poem, and yes the nature link.

    I like your response. Its gentle rather than horrific, yet potent

    Much🌼love

  2. Poppies are such a strong symbols these days. It’s hard to think that just over a hundred years ago they didn’t carry that meaning.

  3. poppies are eternal – like death and rebirth and seem to be a “natural” to envision, imagine and associate with war – of course, wild poppies perhaps, will naturally spring in the ashes of battlefields, (I like the idea, truth be damned) and I like the way you’ve treated this subject – revealing the two aspects, but still speaking of hope …. for peace and love to endure, persist ….

  4. This is a piece of art, a poem which belongs in the canon of war poetry.
    It reads like a classic but presents a post modern view of the theme.

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