Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Day of Remembrance


My office shuts down on Remembrance Day, so I used my time off the way it was intended ... I went to the  ceremonies at the town square where the cenotaph stands. As I looked for a parking spot, I could hear the faint strains of bagpipe music. I fell into line with the masses who seem to be coming out of nowhere -- all heading for the square. I could feel my throat tightening and emotion starting to well with every step that took me closer. The first sighting of the wizened, craggy face of a veteran, standing slightly hunched - proudlly at attention, white gloved hand on the staff of the standard he bore ... tears released. It's the faces. They are faces of survivors, men and women who have born witness to unspeakable horrors, and suffered great losses.

The parade of military, Canadian Mounted Police, provincial and local police, firemen and Scottish Regiments that solemnly marched behind the piper painted a colourful canvas that completely overwhelmed me. People dabbed their eyes with tissue as they passed. Collective reverance and respect -- and gratitude. It doesn't happen often enough. But today we stood still and silent as a community and refllected. I thought of the men and women who spent years in trenches, water up to their knees, who faced their "enemy" in hand to hand combat. I reflected on the waste and pain of war -- and how soldiers are called into service in our country to keep peace and help rebuild nations. I thought of wars being fought at this very second around the planet and of people who cannot lay their heads down at night without fear.

I bowed my head in silent prayer and respect. No matter how we may feel about war and the politics that go with it, we have to remember that it is our brothers and sisters (and their families) who carry the torch and bear the burden of service.

And today, my beloved maple leaf flew at half mast, her brilliant crimson cutting the gray of the day -- and she was as glorious as ever.

Je me souviens.









2 comments:

  1. Lyn,

    This was a thoughtful,and beautifully written and constructed post!! And your photos, as always, are so lovely! I walked with you today...and reflected with gratitude upon the lives of those who have served not only our countries, but the world in the quest for peace...Thank you for such a wonderful tribute on such a special day!! With love, Janine OX

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