Poppies bathed in rain
Remembering the fallen
Teardrops on spilled blood
One hundred years ago today was the first day of the Battle of the Somme.
The Somme Offensive ran from July 1st to November 18th 1916 and was one of the bloodiest battles in history, with over one million men wounded and killed. The first day of battle, despite being a British victory with the capture of the German-held position, was the worst day in the entire history of the British army with approximately 57,470 casualties. It’s hard to imagine such devastating losses.
The poppy has been used to remember those lost in conflict since the First World War, when the Canadian poet John McCrae recognised its potency as a symbol in his poem Flanders Fields. The land that had been torn apart by exploding mortars and bathed in the blood of soldiers was soon after covered in a carpet of the blood red flowers.
If you’d like to know more about the Battle of the Somme you can check out the Wikipedia article here. If you’d like to learn about the commemorative events occurring to mark the centenary you can check out the BBC website here.