With Heartfelt Gratitude

This is one of my earliest posts about Remembrance Day.
I am reposting as my thoughts expressed here stand and sadly, nothing has changed except perhaps that “Lest We Forget” has now become “The World’s Biggest Shopping Day is now 11/11” and “11/11 isn’t just for Singles anymore!”
Service men and women fought for our right to freedom, not for our right to shop. Show some respect. Wear a poppy, stand for the two minutes, pull over, stop your damn car and be grateful that someone had the courage to make the sacrifice for you and your future.

The Eclectic Poet

“He is not missing, He is here”

~ Field Marshal Lord Plumer at the unveiling of the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing 24th July 1927

~~~~~

I am the first generation in my family that hasn’t served, fought or died for this country…

It’s not a big deal, something that gets talked about alot. Just something I noticed about a decade ago while working on a November 11th project with the kids.

When it comes to mind lately, the thought is even more poignant…

Some of the children who went to school at the same time, who made the construction paper poppies and sang John Lennon’s  “Give Peace A Chance” at the Remembrance Day assembly –  “my kids” – are part of the Canadian Forces currently in Afghanistan.

Boggles the mind. The “War To End All Wars” has come and gone and still, the world fights on.

I doubt that…

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With Heartfelt Gratitude

“He is not missing, He is here”

~ Field Marshal Lord Plumer at the unveiling of the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing 24th July 1927

~~~~~

I am the first generation in my family that hasn’t served, fought or died for this country…

It’s not a big deal, something that gets talked about alot. Just something I noticed about a decade ago while working on a November 11th project with the kids.

When it comes to mind lately, the thought is even more poignant…

Some of the children who went to school at the same time, who made the construction paper poppies and sang John Lennon’s  “Give Peace A Chance” at the Remembrance Day assembly –  “my kids” – are part of the Canadian Forces currently in Afghanistan.

Boggles the mind. The “War To End All Wars” has come and gone and still, the world fights on.

I doubt that anyone my age truly believes that there’ll be a time when there is no more war. It’s a sad and unfortunate truth that the world has become more violent, the rhetoric more virulent and the willful blindness and stupidity just never changed at all.

My hope for Remembrance Day is that in speaking openly about the human face of war, by celebrating the huge victories for peace and freedom that past generations won and supporting the people who continue fighting for all of us today; we’ll  all remember that the simple, sometimes mundane reality of our everyday lives is actually a gift.

That people just like us, left everything they hold dear, fought, were wounded and died. It crystallizes the concept of one person making a difference and how when all those individuals consolidate their efforts for such an honourable cause, just how much can be achieved.

Look around you Canada, the spirit of Remembrance Day is with us every day.

Great Great Grandpa Carey James Tupper – The Boer War

Great Grandpa Carey Tupper – killed in action 2 June 1916, WWI, Ypres

Great Grandpa Thomas Howell Thomas – wounded in action 1917, WW!, Passchendaele

Great Grandpa James Harris Thorpe – Canadian Merchant Marine WWII, Atlantic Theatre

Great Uncle Bill Thorpe – Canadian Merchant Marine WWII, Atlantic Theatre

Great Auntie Jean – 2nd Lieutenant during World War Two, Commemorative Medal of the Confederation of Canada

Great Uncle Clayton Thorpe – Canadian Armed Forces WWII, Italy, France, Belgium, liberation of Germany

My Dad Earl C. Tupper – Canadian Armed Forces

Grandpa William C. Collins – Canadian Air Force and Corps of Engineers, WWII

Thank you to “My Kids”, Canadian Armed Forces, currently serving in Afghanistan. I won’t call you out here but I better see you soon!

Carey Judson Tupper. Panel 30 & 32

Carey Judson Tupper. Panel 30 & 32

Blessed Yule

Another year is closing.

This will be a very different Yule for me. My Dad and my Grandmother are gone, one of my babies is on the west coast, thousands of miles away. There is a new baby in the family – my Nephew’s daughter, just two weeks old and that’s a blessing. She is a beautiful and poignant reminder of how our lives and family connections are all circular.

Wishing all of my friends here a wonderful holiday season. May your observances and celebrations reinforce all the ties that bind and may we all enjoy the gifts of peace, hope and love.

~ kei
21 December 21015

“Midnight Messenger” by Anne Stokes

We Stand On Guard

Since before Confederation, The American Revolution, The Boer War, The War of 1812, First World War, Second World War, Korea. On land, on sea, in air – my family has been proud to serve, fight and die for this country and yours. I wish I could honour all of them with a photo or a word or two. I’ll settle with the simplest and the most heartfelt.
Thank you.

 

Of A Feather

Listening to the song of cardinals reminded you of me
They trilled in my garden and sang in your bougainvillaea
Your heart was healing and you were ready to fly
Soaring on the strength of the love between you and I

You rushed out into the bright, beckoning sky to soar
For a time, it was so beautiful, to watch you in flight
But bright plumage attracts others both friend and foe
Once the vultures had begun to circle, they wouldn’t go

Intent on only taking, they stole in darkness and in lies
Your dark confusion returned, I could see you’d lost your way
Their theft left you adrift in air streams with no way back
Not one cared that they’d stolen your heart and soul’s map

But has come a gentle white dove to my world of dark
Gifting me with an olive branch that tastes of your kisses
Though eons pass until this phoenix heart is ready again for the sky
The kindness of one among the many, gives me reason to wish to try

~ kei
16 October 2014

Kateri, Bleddyn and Cardinal

Stars, Bars, Love and Wars

Remembrance Day is important to me. I am both proud and humbled to say that I am the first generation in my family that hasn’t served, fought or died for my country since long before Confederation.

My post this year, is dedicated to my friends who are still in service, to all of those family members and to one in particular. My Great Auntie Jean, who for me was “just” my Dad’s sweet, kind, grandmotherly aunt. Someone who I only saw on family trips back home. I recently found out that Auntie Jean was a 2nd Lieutenant during World War Two and was awarded the Commemorative Medal of the Confederation of Canada.

Thank you is never enough. It is what we have to give though, and so this is mine.

Jean Isabelle Thorpe

Jean Isabelle Thorpe

~~~~

Stars, Bars, Love and Wars

Twinkle, twinkle little star
Shining bright but oh, so far

You must be my lucky star
When I wake at night, there you are

Stars that shine so very bright
The star on your chest says
You did this right

Silver stars, stars of gold
For gallant conduct
And tales never told

Bars of gold stacked on a field of blue shine
Feel my love in letters behind enemy lines

Bars with whiskey and with wine
Mark the passage of old Vet’s time

No holds barred, make that jump
Feel your blood race
When the bullets thump

Face the bars of an enemy cage
“No man left behind”
Earns a stripe to mark the stage

Love sets aside the worries and fears
Paints a smile on her face to hide the tears

With a look, all the love that she can convey
As she hands to her man, his green beret

~ kei