"In Flanders Fields the poppies blow."- Jon McCrae.
I came to Ypres a year ago
listening in tears to The Last Post
imagining young frightened men
marching through here back in 1917
on their way to the centre of hell.
And still today the soldiers' bones appear
from Passchendaele in that terrible year.
But I remember green fields and sunshine
far from the mud, blood, death of war:
a hundred day battle with half a million victims
just for an advance of five miles.
54,000 names are inscribed
on the walls of the poignant Menin Gate,
so many suffering an awful fate.
I pictured the fallen in no-man's land,
the lucky ones beyond screams.
Some of their homes were across the Channel
and yet a million miles away.
I visited the white graves of unknown soldiers
at Tyne Cot and on hearing The Last Post
I seemed to sense...many a soldier's ghost.