There was a time when I didn’t wear a poppy around Armistice Day. I felt that it was a glorification of war but as I have got older my feelings have changed. I always now wear one at this time of year.
I wear it for two reasons. Firstly, it reminds me of the many thousands of people who have given up their lives so that I may live in peace, in prosperity and in relative freedom. I think about how they must have felt when they were called up, when they made their way to the battle fields and when they engaged the enemy. I wonder how I would have reacted in the same circumstances. I imagine that I would be very frightened and not brave at all. I would be nobody’s hero.
Secondly I wear it to remind me that the killing of people is never a solution. All lives are of value. The pitting of one man against another does nothing to solve the world’s problems. The war to end all wars has not yet happened. I’m not sure it ever will. I am grateful that I have not been called upon to make such a sacrifice, as I don’t know if I could.
That is why I wear my poppy.