Live Life

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This blog is not about my life laid bare for all the world to see.  However, I have alluded to the fact that I have been very busy recently so tonight I wanted to share a little of that with you.

About 10 days ago I was part of a gathering of my extended family.  Like many families, sometimes it seems as though the only times we connect with cousins and others beyond our immediate family is at funerals.  Some months ago I came up with the idea of gathering on the centenary of our grandfather’s arrival at Gallipoli.  He was not in the first contingent of Australian forces who landed on 25th April but was in some of the reinforcements who arrived in mid-July.  A series of events led to him meeting his future wife (our grandmother) in England, and so, our branch of the family grew and flourished.

After much anticipation, family members gathered from near and far for a day of celebration and reminiscing.  The weather was kind, memories were shared and connections rekindled.  We had an amazing day.

2015-07-22 01I think this photograph captured the essence of the day perfectly.

Centenary

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Today, 25th April is the anniversary of the landing of Australian and New Zealand troops at Gallipoli during WW1.

2015-04-25 012015 marks the centenary of this event and the various commemorative events have attracted huge interest and some of the largest crowds ever.

I did not attend any formal gathering but did spend time reflecting on the service of men and women in all conflicts.  As well as those who made the ultimate sacrifice, let us not forget the prisoners-of-war and those whose lives were curtailed by physical and psychological wounds and their families.

It seems that there is barely a family who has not been touched by war.  Social media has been awash with posts as many seek to share their stories.  One post led me to find this poem.  The final two lines are a stark reminder.

A Poem for Remembrance Day

Why are they selling poppies, Mummy?
Selling poppies in town today.
The poppies, child, are flowers of love.
For the men who marched away.

But why have they chosen a poppy, Mummy?
Why not a beautiful rose?
Because my child, men fought and died
In the fields where the poppies grow.

But why are the poppies so red, Mummy?
Why are the poppies so red?
Red is the colour of blood, my child.
The blood that our soldiers shed.

The heart of the poppy is black, Mummy.
Why does it have to be black?
Black, my child, is the symbol of grief.
For the men who never came back.

But why, Mummy are you crying so?
Your tears are giving you pain.
My tears are my fears for you my child.
For the world is forgetting again.

Lest we forget.