REX TURNBULL FRSA

In Flanders’ fields the poppies grow

Acrylic on board

60cm diameter

 

Rex Turnbull

The red Flanders’ poppy was first described as a flower of remembrance by Colonel John McCrae, who was Professor of Medicine at McGill University of Canada before World War One.

Colonel McCrae had served as a gunner in the Boer War, but went to France in World War One as a medical Officer with the first Canadian Contingent.

At the second battle of Ypres in 1915, when in charge of a small first-aid post, he wrote in pencil on a page torn from his dispatch book:

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 our quarrel with the foe,

To you from failing 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.