In the spring of 1915 at Ypres, shortly after losing a friend, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae wrote his now-famous poem ‘In Flanders Fields’. The poem inspired the use of the poppy as a symbol of Remembrance.
In Flanders Fields
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.
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.
The poppy is a symbol of Remembrance and hope, including hope for a positive future and a peaceful world.