The Power of Peace in Troubling Times

Through times may be tough, we must always remember to look back on the path we have tread, and to be grateful for where we are. The poems below are reminders of those who fought the battles that many of us couldn’t. Take time to appreciate those who stood before us, and those who stand now for us. Without them, the world wouldn’t be where it is today. Though we may not be fighting a conventional war now, we are fighting a virus, so stay strong and stay happy.

Dulce et Decorum Est by Wilfred Owen
Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!—An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime.—
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,

Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,—
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,

Though we stand here happy and proud,
upon this nation holding hand in hand,
we must take time,
to never forget,
the loss of lives not old as of yet.

Take a minute,
or perhaps more,
and pay tribute to the previous wars.

To all those lost and found,
who are laid to rest in the peaceful ground.
To those lost and not yet found,
we honor you all,
by making no sound.

A minute of silence across the world,
to establish their light,
and how it shines against the blight.

A minute of silence across the world,
to let their light shine,
in their own divine world.

The chains broken,
yet no words are spoken.
The sacrifice of those,
names once known by many,
lost to time,
yet live on in our memory.

Pay homage to the bravery of past,
and may the peace they fought for,
ever last.

For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon
With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain;
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.