I remember…when I was 14, I wrote a poem for a Remembrance Day contest.
November 11th is Remembrance Day in Canada.
The day is also called Veteran’s Day or Armistice Day in other countries. It is a day to pause, remember and thank those brave people throughout our history and in the present who have fought and do fight for our freedoms.
They faced their fears so that we could live in a better world.
Ok…so back to this poem. I wrote the poem below when I was 14 for a contest. Yes, I won the contest. The thing was…while I did and do think my poem was pretty good, hardly anyone entered the contest so there wasn’t much competition. Very few kids my age seemed to really understand or ‘get’ what the whole day was about. That saddened and confused me a lot (still does).
But in my family, we have many family stories about our ancestors who did fight including my own grandfather.
It is very important to me that my own children know and remember the significance not just of the day but of the history of the major wars and all that includes.
We all go to a ceremony every year and here in Canada we wear a poppy not to glorify war, but rather to show our support and remembrance. The point is we remember in hopes of one day there is no more war anywhere in the world. To say Thank you.
So here is my poem…(remember I was a kid when I wrote it).Grandfather By: Heather E. Wilson He marched bravely off to war. Thinking himself a would-be hero. He never expected to his best friend to die or to have his comrades blood splattered on his face. He thought the enemy to be unfeeling but their anguished screams haunted his sleep. He thought to spit in their face instead he wept at their feet. He didn’t see the man with the gun or when it aimed at his heart. His death meant his children though fatherless could live a liberated life and his grandchildren would never know war. Remember me he whispered. The soldier died believing he had died for his country, his children and his grandchildren. And, poppies grow where his life’s blood last flowed.
Do you have difficulty discussing war and Remembrance Day with your children?
My cousin Stephanie Innes has written two great children’s books that really help explain the world wars to kids from the point of view of a teddy bear.
The stories are fiction but are based on true events and people in my family’s history. Very very awesome books…and I’d say that even if we were not related.
Check them out.
(World War 1)
(World War II)
Please take a moment today to pause and thank those brave people all around the world who risk their lives every day for our protection and safety and freedoms (this includes not just soldiers but police, firefighters, medics, nurses, doctors, etc.)