Flower of the eternal sleep,
Watching with the ones who weep -
You, whose lives, so short in bloom,
Watched the bloodshed, death and gloom.
You trembled to the sound of guns
Which tore to death beloved sons.
You fluttered, died before your time –
Dropped blood red petals in their prime.
Crimson poppies 'neath the clouds,
Short lived, yet colourful and proud;
Now worn by people with such pride
Remembering those who bravely died -
You represent young lives cut short -
Those who, for freedom, bravely fought.
Flower of the eternal sleep
Silently your vigil keep.
Copyright on all my poems
My father: Your life for one shilling (ie 5p) a day?
This poem has been put to music for organ and choir by Robert May, the organist of Dymock Church, Gloucestershire, England. The video has a slow link. Be patient please.
My father aged 18: He actually recorded this message the week before he died aged 86 - a true message as he would have written it home in 1918. This is exactly what happened to him. He wanted us to remember.
Flower of the Eternal Sleep is one of the most popular of my poems. I've had as many as 2000 visitors to this poem on Remembrance Day and it was one of almost 400 poems that was chosen by teachers and children for inclusion in my book: "Reflections" which was published by AMS Educational Publishers Ltd in 2010.