Submitted by Larissa Fulawka in the 18+ category
The Somme, Passchendaele, Vimy Ridge,
Only words in textbooks of battles fought long ago,
Distant places unreachable to most,
Until their significance is revealed:
The sacrifices required,
The lives lost.
The more time passes,
The further in history these events become,
The more we must remember.
No longer can we look to see the terror flash
In the eyes of a soldier who witnessed the atrocities of World War I.
The vivid memories of what life was like
In World War II slowly fade with the minds of our grandparents.
As we go about our day,
The ever day struggles we face
Make it easy to forget,
To brush it off as something to think about later,
At a more convenient time:
A time where we have everything off our to-do lists.
But that time never arrives.
If desperation comes knocking,
The easy response is “we need to help our own communities first”,
Or “how can we be sure they aren’t the ‘bad’ guys disguised?”
Quick to disregard the needs of the other,
Blissfully ignorant of the terrors they face.
Current wars are fought far off in distant lands.
Conscription and mandatory rations are unheard of.
Fear is only revealed on newscasts,
And even then,
Can be turned off with a single click
But war is still endured every day,
By people who simply hold
Only the desire to return to a normal life:
For children to play outside, to attend school again,
For parents to work and provide,
For a safer future for loved ones.
Simply hoping for a future, we often take for granted.
Our future was once this uncertain,
If it weren’t for those brave souls,
Whom fought for our freedom
In battles such as the Somme, Passchendaele, and Vimy Ridge.
Lest we forget.