Decoration Day

Touch the Sky  — Photographer Rachel Baran

 

Decoration Day
10 Words Only


What’s done is done. Therein lies the rub, the truth.

 

“Only the dead have seen the end of war.”
― Plato

Leonard Cohen recites “In Flanders Fields by John McCrae.   Blank

 

In Flanders Fields
by John McCrae

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.

 

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72 thoughts on “Decoration Day

  1. Love the photo and perfect choice of words for Decoration Day. I hadn’t realized that Leonard Cohen had recited McCrae’s “In Flanders Fields” so thank you for that. Unfortunately Plato’s quote seems to be true. Wonderful posting for today, thank you Mia. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much dear Maverick. You know I put this post together over the last many days, I was delightfully surprised to see that we used the same title and had a similar intent or rather sentiment with our posts. So or course I love the Longfellow poem that you used. I have always loved McCrae’s poem, I think Cohen’s reading is superb. Sadly and brilliantly Plato did hit the mark with his words. Wishing you well on this Decoration Day. ~ Mia xo

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  2. I’ve been vaguely irritated all day reading posts on WP and Facebook about Memorial Day, and didn’t realize why until I read your’s. All those “Have a happy Memorial Day” ones.

    No. It’s not a celebration, but a time to reflect. Thanks for reminding us.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for a very kind and most meaningful comment. Agreed, it’s not meant to be a happy day, I’m pleased that you feel I have achieved this. In my opinion, it’s quite a solemn day, one of remembrance and ” a time to reflect”, as you so perfectly stated. I’m deeply saddened that many feel it’s just a celebration of another three day weekend.
      ~ Mia

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Alan, for me today is unlike any other, so I thank you for your kindness and generous words. McCrae’s poem breaks my heart every time I read it, as it should. Plato’s words are perfect and sadly so true. Please be well. ~ Mia

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Nitin, the McCrae poem is very powerful and heartbreaking indeed. You are absolutely right about Plato’s quote, thank you very much, I’m pleased that you felt it worked with this effort. Please take good care. ~ Mia

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  3. Mia, such a solemn post. You have chosen your words, the photo and the poem to fit perfectly together – the smeared hand print of blood, along with your word, ‘rub’, and also the line, “That mark our place; and in the sky”. In Canada we have (in order to not say ‘celebrate’ because it’s really not a celebratory event now, is it) Remembrance Day on November 11th, and there is a tradition of wearing a red poppy pin, which comes from the poem that you’ve posted, “In Flander’s Fields” (I believe I had to memorize that poem when I was in primary school). Do you do that in The US too? I believe it’s the same thing as Memorial Day. A day to remember those of the armed forces that died in duty.
    Well, I won’t really wish you a happy Memorial Day, but I will definitely wish you and very lovely week.
    🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Staci, I want to thank you so much for noticing all the small details of the post, as well as your kindness and most generous comment. I’m pleased that you liked the photo, you are spot on with “rub” and yes, “That mark our place; and in the sky”, is perfect too, which all fell into place after I wrote my ten words. No, it’s certainly not a day of celebration, but one of remembrance, just as you stated. The red poppy is exceptionally significant and the history behind it is most heartfelt. We did have to memorize things in school, however this poem was not one of them. Yes, Decoration Day is the same as Memorial Day, your right it’s a somber day for me, one spent in reflection. Thank you for your kind wishes, please have a lovely week as well. ~ Mia 🙂 ❤

      (Staci, I see there are a couple of other wonderful comments. Like you I want to take my time when it’s quiet and I won’t be interrupted, I will reply tonight or tomorrow.)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Mia, you are more than welcome. Always a pleasure. Yes, that photo is phenomenal actually. I would love to get to a point in photography to be able to do artistic stuff that speaks a message. I bought a very comprehensive photoshop class online for a really good price (on sale) and want to start it once my other two classes are done at the end of June.
        Interesting how Memorial Day is also called ‘Decoration Day’. I wonder why that is.
        The red poppy that Canadians use is a very big deal for my mom’s family, and even my mom to this day. It is because my Grandpa was in the navy. She’s lived all over the country because of it. Even just about 100 miles outside of the Arctic Circle. Brrrr.
        “Like you I want to take my time when it’s quiet and I won’t be interrupted, I will reply tonight or tomorrow.)”
        –Ohh, no problem at all. Really. I know how difficult it can be to find that quiet, uninterrupted time. I don’t even get to anything on Tuesdays because my day is so full. Please never worry about taking your time. I’m no offended at all.
        Thank you for such a thoughtful reply Mia, and please enjoy the rest of the week.
        🙂 ❤

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Staci, I really like Rachel Baran’s photography, I think it’s wonderful. I know you will be able to do whatever you put your mind to, you’re so talented. The end of June is not that far off, the class sounds fascinating.

          Here in the US, after the Civil War the graves were decorated with flowers, calling it Decoration Day. Eventually this became Memorial Day, honoring all Americans who died while in service to their country.

          I bet your mother has some wonderful stories to tell about all the different places they lived. I got the chills when I read Arctic Circle, ha-ha. 🙂 I think wearing the red poppy is a beautiful tradition.

          Oh good, I was hoping you would understand, so thank you. You’re most welcome, it’s always a pleasure to share thoughts with you. Wishing you a wonderful and very creative rest of your week. Please take good care. ~ Mia 🙂 ❤

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          1. Mia, oh yes. I think I’m going to google Rachel Baran to see more of her works. From what you’ve posted, looks like she’s a photographer I would really like.
            Thank you for the explanation on Decoration Day. Now that makes more sense.
            My mom has some pretty cool stories. Like playing baseball at midnight with the sun shining. Crazy huh. 🙂
            Always a pleasure sharing thoughts with you too Mia.
            Have a great day.
            🙂 ❤

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Staci, I hope you enjoy Rachel’s work, interesting she uses herself as the subject in most of her photos.

            You’re welcome, Decoration Day is an old tradition and not unique to the US, I think it’s just something we do to feel just a little bit better about losing the ones we love.

            I thought she would. Oh yes, how fun to play baseball at midnight in full sun. (I would think that would mess up the sleep cycle, maybe you get accustom to it.)

            Thank you so much, it’s such a joy to share ideas and thoughts with you. You too, have a great day. 🙂 ❤

            Liked by 1 person

          3. Mia, I googled her while in bed (not sleepy) last night. She has some wild photos. I really like conceptual/surrealist photography. I hope to be able to do some of it myself, one of these days. Hahaha. I get so many projects on my plate. This is one of them.
            Have a lovely weekend Mia. As for us, it’s getting colder here.
            🙂 ❤

            Liked by 1 person

          4. Staci, I’m glad you had a chance to see some of Rachel’s photography. I’m excited for you, I bet the class will be wonderful. Oh yes, easy to fill up the plate. Thank you for the kind wishes, wishing you a lovely weekend as well. Stay warm, I’ll send you some of our hot weather, ha-ha! 🙂 ❤

            Liked by 1 person

          5. Oh great. Yes, please do. Actually, the sun came out today and I’m back in shorts. Can’t complain. I know it’s going to get progressively cooler though. Ugh.
            Have a great week Mia.
            🙂 ❤

            Liked by 1 person

  4. You are brilliant, dear Mia. If we were Dothraki, I would say – ‘blood of my blood’ – so truly do you capture my own thoughts and feelings so often. A moving tribute, made fittingly startling by your fresh and elegant portrayal. Bravo! I have always loved Flanders Fields and Cohen is a long-time friend…I never knew of this reading and now you have combined two favourites for me. Thank you for this beautiful post. I really do love the way your clever mind turns. Have a wonderful week 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ryan, I want to thank you for your kindness and more than generous words. *Smiling*, “blood of my blood” what a marvelous thought, thank you. I’m so pleased to read that you felt that everything worked together. “In Flanders Fields” is such an emotional poem and to have it recited by Leonard Cohen, makes it all the more so. Wishing you a wonderful week as well, please take good care.
      ~ Mia 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Powerful post on this very important day ~ memories, running very deep and you’ve chosen such a poignant series of mediums to focus on the real meaning of the day… The photo, words and especially “In Flander’s Fields” poem are haunting as is the timber of Leonard Cohen’s voice/words.
    Wish you well Mia.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Randall, for your lovely thoughts and words. It is an important day, I’m pleased that my feelings about this day came across. I completely agree with you, having Cohen recite “In Flanders Fields” is an emotional and “haunting” experience. Thank you again for your kindness, please take good care of yourself. ~ Mia

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    1. Thank you for your wonderful words Chris. *Smiling*, it’s all in the details, right? Life is so full of “Crossroads” and “Yield” signs, this photo could not have been more perfect in my opinion. Wishing you well. ~ Mia

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Mia,

    This hit me hard.. Having had a few personal encounters with war, my heart goes out to all who are resting below. To the children whose dreams will never be beautiful, even when they grow up, to the mothers whose milk was spread all over the streets of pain and betrayal.

    War, is an animal that does not leave you till you are dead..

    The photo and the reading compliment each other perfectly well.
    You are an artist with a big heart my dear friend.

    Always love to you,
    Dajena ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Dajena, thank you my friend for gracing me with such heartfelt words and for sharing your thoughts. True, “War, is an animal that does not leave you till you are dead.” The memories stay with us until the end, as I believe they should.

      Wishing you well and a speedy recovery. I hope you’re done with the term and can take care of yourself and take it easy.

      Much love always,
      Mia ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Dear Mia,
        I am feeling much better today. It was the last day of exams for the kids today, and tomorrow is my last day. I am looking forward to the beach and pool days!
        Sending you germ free love 😀 😀
        ❤ Dajena

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Dajena, I’m so happy to read that you’re feeling much better. Wow, enjoy your last day tomorrow. Yay, water days ahead! 🙂 Please have a wonderful evening. Much love, Mia ❤

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  7. Damn….’In Flanders Fields’ is soooooo vehement…I got goosebumps.

    Plato is absolutely wise as always…..and ‘Touch the Sky’ is captivating.

    Mia u scratched depth even with those 10 words 🙂 ……..Keep writing my friend 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Saaransh, thank you, you’re so kind. It’s always a pleasure to read your comments. “In Flanders Fields” is indeed a very special poem. Plato, so true and I’m glad that you liked the photography of Rachel Baran, she’s very talented.

      Please enjoy the rest of your week, may it be filled with great creativity. Take good care.
      ~ Mia

      Liked by 1 person

  8. This is such a lovely post Mia. My great-grandmother always used the term Decoration Day as opposed to Memorial Day, that’s what I’ve always called it too. Leonard Cohen is such an american treasure and “In Flanders Fields” so moving. I hope you have a wonderful day! – Lola

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    1. Thank you Lola, for your lovely words. It’s nice to know that you still use the term Decoration Day, I find the meaning behind it beautiful and heartbreaking. I completely agree, “In Flanders Fields” is so moving and to hear it recited by Leonard Cohen makes it even more so. Thank you for the kind wishes, likewise, have a wonderful day. ~ Mia

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  9. I go to my quiet place on this day. Faces of friends lost to war are the reminders. War is fair. Cold, heartless and no-one truly wins in war. Plato was right. Soldiers do not fight wars anymore after they know death.

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        1. Thank you George, baby steps, baby steps as in, “What About Bob?” I like it too, it’s funny how things come into being. For some reason, Lightfoot & Feather remind me of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Have a good Friday morning and a very productive day. ~ Feather

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          1. Thank you George, it will be a good day. Lightfoot has been eating well the last couple of days, I think I may have found something to his liking, at least for now. We wish you a very good day. ~ Lightfoot & Feather

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