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 (May 1915)
With the sky growing darker with the promise of a heavy rain fall, it was time for us to leave the Poppy Garden and the felines set off for home in search of a warm fire...
With Minnie B's tribute now sitting proudly along with the others in the Poppy Garden, I watch them as they pause before the rows of silver crosses...
Murphy slips quietly into view with his own poppy tribute cradled between his paws.
As I watch Murphy carefully place his poppy in the garden deep in thought, I wonder who is occuping his thoughts today, for having recently discovered the identities of two more ancestors who perished in WW1 my thoughts are with a Sergt. Percy Oswald Wright Edeson and Pte. William Lamb both of whom never lived to see their 21st birthday.
As my research about William and Percy continues and with the promise of exciting tales as yet undiscovered, I shall continue to share the ‘fruits’ of my family history sleuthing on my blog and I have already commissioned a ‘Roll of Honour’ that records the names of the Fallen and which will soon have pride of place within the cosy interior of St M’s Parish Church.
However, much to my surprise, I hear yet another rustle of the leaves and there before us is Minnie B!
Although Minnie B is very young, her determination is equal to her ferocious appetite and she had made her way through the garden on her own to pay her respects on this most solemn day of remembrance with a carefully nestled Poppy between her paws.
However, it was Murphy who sensed her uncertainty about what she should do next and he quickly made his way to her and gently showed her what to do...
And with my thoughts returning once more to the stories of Percy Edeson and William Lamb, I enjoyed a final look at our Poppy Garden...
Today is Armistice Day and with the weather here in York somber and dark, the ambiance feels somehow appropriate as I wind my way through my garden and to the old corbel stone that is nestled among the shrubs and ferns and where my ‘Poppy Garden’ now waits.
I would be alone if it were not for our three resident chickens, affectionately known as the ‘Girls’ who are keeping a respectful distance and as I pause while holding a silver cross decorated with a Flanders Poppy and with the 'Eleventh Hour' approaching, I think of the poem written by John McCrae:
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.
It is then that I hear the familiar rustle of leaves and before I can add my tribute to the others in the garden...
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