Tomorrow is Remembrance Sunday in the UK and Commonwealth and Europe and Veterans Day in the USA

Remembrance Day ..... the 11th hour of the 11th Day of the 11th Month. Armistice Day.

My Grandad was a muleateer in WWI... survival time rated 1 week ....and survived the 5 nightmare years. My Dad was on long range penetration behind enemy lines in Burma for 4 out of the 5 years of WWII .. survival time reckoned at 2 weeks... he did 4 years.. Neither talked about the horror and the nightmares... they spoke of the comradeship and selflessness of others.

I like all of us grew up honouring the men and women who bought our freedom with their lives.. and their hopes... and their bravery. Many since have continued this sacrifice in more pointless wars.. and there have been over the centuries amazing acts of sacrifice in the name of Freedom.

Freedom isnt Free and a "Right" isnt a Right... is earned.. with a few exceptions..... and all of us.. combatant.. or non-combatant have a duty of responsibility to see these sacrifices arent in vain.

My beloved Dad died 10th November 1984 .. he was just short of his 63rd birthday ... there is always an extra bitter-sweet about this time of year.

At the going down of the Sun and in the morning......


For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.
Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.
They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.
But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain;
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

We will remember them


In Flanders Fields

by Lt. Col. John McCrae, M.D. (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

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.