Many years ago, after the First World War, a piece of paper came to light. On it were some hastily scribbled words: “The blood swept lands and seas of red, where angels fear to tread.”
A young man, from the English county of Derbyshire, had written them down in his will as he, along with many other men, were lying wounded and dying in the fields around Flanders, France. I recently found them, and using them I wrote a poem for Remembrance Day.
This year is actually the 100th Anniversary of the writing of "In Flanders Fields" by Canadian Lieutenant Colonel John McCrea, and therefore I thought it fitting to remember that timeless piece of poetry with one of my own composition. I hope it only adds to the depth of feeling and respect elicited by "In Flanders Fields."
'Seas of Red'
Through blood-swept lands and seas of red
Where the angels feared to tread,
Across the sea to mountainside
To the place where many died.
One Hundred years, so long ago
A hundred places, to fight the foe,
Countless men, then standing firm
While those at home, for them yearn.
Fighting for freedom against cruel tyranny
Those heroes died – both for you and me,
Never forget (or let slip away)
The history of those fateful days.
Few men returned, yet those who did
Had only done as they were bid;
The rest now lie in peaceful fields
Their soul to their Maker they did yield.
And as I walk through rows of crosses
Step through the poppies, tread on the mosses,
I always remember – and with bared head –
The courage of the honoured dead.
Lest We Forget
Written and posted by William A Moore