Friday, September 17, 2004

Flanders Fields
By Lt. Col. John Mc Crae, M.D.

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 the quarrel with the foe.
To you from falling 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.

Lieutenant Colonel John Mc Crae, MD (1872-1918) was a Canadian surgeon
who served in the first World War. Although he attended many wounds in
many battles, he never got used to seeing men suffer, scream and bleed from
their injuries. In the spring of 1915 following "the terrible battle in the Ypres salient"
Mc Crae expressed his anguish in this poem. Another officer told how he saw McCrae
write the poem as he eyed the grave of a young friend and former student-- he helped
bury the previous day. Mc Crae tossed the poem--which was later retrieved by a
colleague. He sent the poem to The Spectator in London--but they rejected it.
Punch Publishing later accepted it and issued it on December 8, 1915.
It is one of the most memorable war poems ever written.
(Let's think about outlawing war this Memorial Day--it can happen.
As JFK once said about peace-it may not happen in our time but let's
start somewhere. )- Doris Cadigan, May 26, 2003 from
Axis of Logic

Silver wood Regina NM

Monday, September 13, 2004


We took Noah to the Explora museum - He had lots of fun making bubbles!

Sunday, September 12, 2004

For My Grandson

This is your first night in Carrigskeewaun.
The Owennadoraun is so full of rain
You arrived in Paddy Morrison's tractor,
A bumpy approach in your father's arms
To the cottage where, all of one year ago,
You were concieved, a fire seed in the hearth.
Did you hear the wind in the fluffy chimney?
Do you hear the wind tonight, and the rain
And a shore bird calling from the mussel reefs?
Tomorrow I'll introduce you to the sea,
Little hoplite. Have you been missing it?
I'll park your chariot by the otter's rock
And carry you over seaweed to the sea.
There's a tufted duck on David's lake
With her sootfall of hatchlings, pompoms
A day old and already learning to dive.
We may meet the stoat near the erratic
Boulder, a shrew in his mouth, or the merlin
Meadow-pipit-hunting. But don't be afraid.
The leveret breakfasts under the fuschia
Every morning, and we shall be watching.
I have picked wildflowers for you, scabious
And centaury in a jam jar of water
That will bend and magnify the daylight.
This is your first night in Carrigskeeaun.

Michael Longley (from The New Yorker)

In Mimi's Garden

Last day

I loved typing this poem For My Grandson, listening to the words
trill and thrill the tongue. It was so appropriate since the issue arrived
the last day of Noah's visit with us. What an amazing little boy, so curious
and alive, so full of love and intense wonder at the world.

I planted a garden this year, watered the seeds and pulled the weeds
and watched the abundance manifest from the dark earth - and I wondered
at times why I was doing it - Who is it for, all this beauty? I am nearly the
only person who looks at these flowers, or tends these fragile plants.

Then, Noah came - and he loved Mimi's garden! He learned about tomatoes,
how to pick them gently so they didn't squeeze or bruise. How dill tasted,
and how basil to pull the baby carrots.The tassels of cornsilk
and the thorns of roses were of equal interest, and the great sunflowers,
towering and bobbing...He watched lizards and beetles with delight and even
kissed a toad on the mouth, much to our surprise!