Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Musings on Remembrance and Poppies

Prompted by Sharon’s post yesterday on LiveWireJewelry, I looked a little more closely at the origin of using the poppy as a symbol of remembrance for fallen soldiers and those who’ve given service to their country during war. I read ‘In Flanders’s Field’ and some of the history of the movement. I read again about poppy seeds growing in disturbed soil. I spent much of the day thinking about this and my own son’s service in Iraq.

This photo is one my son sent me from Mosul. These two little boys are in hamming it up in front of a market that my son’s platoon patrolled. If you look very closely at the little boy in the red shirt’s right index finger you will see a band aid. That’s one my son applied when these little boys begged to be treated by the medic. After that, we sent many boxes of children’s band aids in rainbow colours, patterned with dinosaurs and sponge bob.

This is another photo from my son of the Jonah (Yunis) Mosque. Built in the 8th century, BC, here it sits relatively untouched among the rubble of war. These little boys have never known anything else but war. Yet here they are hamming it up for the camera, laughing, joking, and behaving just like other little boys all over the world. I can not help but think of them as poppies rising up from disturbed soil. Who knows what will become of them? But it comforts me to think that they are the future and that as children they laughed. And that my son for one brief moment could share a band aid and a laugh with them.

Many thanks. to the many of you, who remembered our soldiers on Memorial Day. Remembering their service helps those who, like my son are fortunate enough to return, to heal from the many memories they must now carry with them. As the mother of a soldier, I am truly touched.


sharon said...

Again, these photos send chills through my body as I type this. I have no words to describe how I feel when I look at these. Yes, good they were able to share laughter amongst this! With this kind of symbolism who needs words?
If I were to meet your son I would like to shake his hand and thank him for what he did for me, and everyone.
I am so glad he is home. Thank him for me and my family. It is very important that your son and the rest of the people who serve
are not forgotten, and sometimes I catch myself taking things for granted. I keep a small flag in an antique vase in my house out at all times to remind myself not to forget.
Thank you LeAnn for your son, your courage, and your strength.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful post, thank you for sharing this.
My father was in the Navy in WWII and he came home with Post Traumatic Syndrome. But in those days it wasn't taken care of. Although my father suffered with this (his night sweats, his fears and nightmares) as children we never knew. My parents never let us know. May God bless our soldiers! I hope your son is well.

stregata said...

A very moving post, LeAnn.
Sending hugs.

kelleysbeads said...

I like your analogy of the young boys being the poppies. And that as children they laughed....you're right, that is comforting. To know that even in the war torn world they are growing up in, they still have laughter. And now band-aids with Sponge Bob :)

hint said...

this is so touching...and you also brought a whole new understanding to poppies. This kind of symbolism one never forgets.

SummersStudio said...

I hold all of your comments in my heart as the treasures that they are. I will pass them on to my son. Actually, I won't have to do that, he reads my blog from time to time.

SharonP said...

Thank you for sharing these pictures and your thoughts. And thanks to your brave son who is protecting us.