John MacCrae from Guelph Ontario wrote a poem titled ‘In Flanders Fields’ to honor our fallen soldiers from World War One. John was a poet, physician, and served as a Lieutenant – Colonel. He wrote the poem in 1915 after his friend and fellow soldier Alexis Helmer’s funeral, who died in the Second Battle of Ypres. MacCrae later died of pneumonia at the end of the war.

This poem is read aloud at ceremonies and school assemblies since it captures the essence of what Remembrance Day stands for. Here is the full poem below:

In Flanders Fields
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.

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