Sunday, 11 November 2012


It's Remembrance Day again.

I'm not normally the sort of person who dwells excessively on sadness - it does bad things to my rather dominant empathetic side - but today is one of those days when I permit myself to do just that. Despite being from an army family, spending three years in the Combined Cadet Force, and supporting the defence of the world against terrorists, I am no supporter of war.

Two years ago, I treated you all to a poem called Soldier. It's an older work of mine, but it's probably one of the ones I am most proud of. The execution is a little wonky, and it's definitely not as polished as much of my newer work, but I don't really care. Because that's not what this poem is for. I didn't write it with the intention of it being a polished, smooth piece of perfectly-crafted lyricism. I wrote it because I meant what I wrote.

There's something beautiful in the simplicity of emotion.

But Remembrance Day isn't just about showing emotion - it's about internal thought as well. Remembrance, to be exact.

Remembrance doesn't need much.
It doesn't need ten-page elegies.
It doesn't need banners and bands and firing cannons into chilly blue mornings.
It doesn't need the crowds, or the public declarations, or the month-long television specials.

It doesn't even need words at all.

All remembrance needs is a heart to hold it.

And maybe a voice or two, to pass it on.


  1. *sniff* I missed the 1 minute silence (again) and I always feel bad. When things like Rememberance day (or ANZAC day) come up, it's really sad, and makes me wonder why all my novels involve massacares and war. Maybe because I'm actually opposed?

    1. Likewise. None of my characters are keen on war - they do it because they have to, or are misguided in their belief that it's right.

      We're doing our Two Minutes Silence in our Abbey service tonight. I did one in my room today as well, at 11 o'clock, but as brunch wasn't until 11:30 that was easy.

      Emotions . . . ugh.

    2. We had a minutes silence in our ANZAC day sevice at school. It was terribly moving. With the bugel-thingy. I feel bad that we didn't put something about Rememberence Day on our blog now...

      I just don't get why people have wars. It's just so... stupid.

    3. Yeah - we play the Last Post on a trumpet up our end. Always drives me to tears, without fail.

      *sigh* Such is human nature, I suppose.

  2. Interestingly enough we just had Veteran's day (remembering the personnel who are serving) on 11/10. Memorial Day (for those who served and have died) is the last Monday of May.

    I know for myself that, like you, though I've never enlisted, support our military even if I abhore war. Sometimes it is inevetable that we must fight to retain our freedoms. Our world is not a perfect world, and never shall it be.

  3. At our school, they change the timetable so we're in assembly at 11, and they get all the trumpeters in the school to be standing at various points near to assemblies (or form rooms as some year groups aren't assembled) and play the Last Post all at the same time. You can usually hear only one of them wherever you are, but sometimes you can hear two. Having it live like that is always very affecting.