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First we remember unless we forget

First we remember unless we forget.
Lights out,
dawn bugle boy.
The Company fell by the Somme.
The Flanders fields,
poppies blew against the wind.
Storms of war brewed again.
Worse than Blackadder without the comedy.
Owen and Sassoon’s poems,
as the full moon rose
over a canvas blue sky –
stars hanging like puppets on strings.
Underneath a velvet canopy
a solitary poplar grows,
like the metaphorical tree of life,
watching over each man,
whether English, French or German.
The stars still shine over those poppy fields,
and now one hundred years from the day,
World War One broke out,
the candles burn,
lights go out synonymously.
Only the marvellous poppy array,
as choristers sing and preachers pray.
Those stars still shine,
the poplar remains
watching over each man
whether English, French or German.
First we remember unless we forget,
the bugle stops, the sun sets.
The Wars cease,
candles burn always.

About Geraldine Ward

Geraldine Ward has been writing and performing various forms of poetry and prose from an early age, and is a regular contributor at the London Farrago Poetry Slam nights. She has published a number of books including the "Now" collection, and has featured in other publications including Katie Metcalfe's "Beautiful Scruffiness" series of magazines.


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