Monday, November 10, 2008

We Shall Remember Them

Yesterday morning I went to the local Brighton Remembrance Parade and Service, which is held down at the Old Steine, by the War Memorial (incidentally, oppposite Son's old flat, the scene of our struggles last year). I was reminded that this time last year Daughter and Grandson stood on the balcony and watched the parade in the sunshine. This year the weather wasn't so good, but at least it didn't rain. When the gun fired at 11 o'clock, everyone fell silent, and there was no sound of traffic. Only the seagulls didn't observe the silence. They flew up and circled around, their strange, sad cries oddly appropriate. During the silence there was a fierce gust of wind which appeared from nowhere and made us all shiver. I was moved to tears, as always, particularly when I saw all the young cadets in their uniforms with their shining faces and polished boots, and thought of all those wonderful young men who went (straight from school some of them) to the dreadful trenches, never to return. Some of them had no boots at all, and walked with bloody feet, many of them blinded with that hideous mustard gas, to field hospitals that had no hope of coping with the numbers of casualties. And as for those poor Mothers - yesterday or today, to lose your children in a War is the most terrible thing.

Why do we still have Wars? It's the eternal question. I don't have an answer, and I don't believe that any answer is really good enough. Perhaps there will come a day when the world has had enough of killing. Perhaps..

9 comments:

aims said...

Oh Margot. I cry with you over this.

I think of all the senseless killings - even knowing that they died to bring us freedom - but yet there is still no peace and the killing keeps on.

How brave these young men are that stand up and march into the face of death for us.

November 11 is our day of parades and silence. I will be spending the day in tears I know. Even though I don't know any of them.

Bless them for what they have done for us and for what they do for us.

softinthehead said...

Let's hope so Margot.

Maggie May said...

Trouble is no one seems to learn by others' experiences and they seem to have to make the same mistakes over & over again. Hence the wars throughout the generations.

Donna said...

Battles are won by slaughter and maneuver. The greater the general, the more he contributes in maneuver, the less he demands in slaughter....Winston Churchill

Men....they all think alike about war...your post was beautiful...hughugs

Expat mum said...

Didn't you know that the only way to solve a problem, come to an agreement or persuade another is to bash them over the head?

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Lovely post. Wouldn't it be wonderful if the wars stopped and we could all live in harmony.

CJ xx

SMS said...

It's strange how standing exposed and silent on a cold November morning can be such a powerful thought-provoking experience.

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

One death is one death too many. That one death is someone's son, brother, father, lover, husband, boyfriend. Maybe if more women ruled the world eh?

Very deeply touching post Margot. I feel so very emotional having read it. X

A Mother's Place is in the Wrong said...

Hello aims, I agree that I'm in awe of these brave young people. They must know that war is no solution, yet they fight for freedom? Maybe. I don't understand, but I always shed tears. M xx

Hi SITH, we can only hope can't we? M xx

You're so right, Maggie. None of it makes any sense when you look at history. Yet it still goes on.
M xx

That's a really interesting quote, Donna. I've never heard it before, but so spot on! Thanks for your visit - if only things could change.. M xx

Thanks Expatmum - you made me laugh! Are you sure you're not a bloke? M :-)

Hi Crystal, oh if only! I wonder if we would recognize harmony after all these years. M xx

Hello and welcome SMS. You're right, it is always touching and poignant. Maybe because it's something we just wouldn't normally do? M x

Hello Mob, that's so true. I like to think that women would do it differently too - and as you say, one death is always one too many. M xx