Sunday, 11 November 2012



Flanders meets the High Street
by Jan Jones
Standing in Waitrose at eleven o’clock
All life suddenly suspended
A woman reaching for cereal
An old man gripping his wire basket
Me with my trolley as
Thousands of cheerful, too fast soldiers
March before my eyes in jerky shades of grey
Joining up together
Fighting together
Dying together
A village wiped out. A community blasted.
So wrong.
The cashiers sit down
People move
Two minutes of life, gone in the blink of an eye.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My original comment disappeared into the stratosphere!
Originally I had read it just after watching the Ceremony in Ottawa complete view re-shown on TV.
I had forgotten that everything stops at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in the UK.
It took a little time for me to relate properly to the poem you wrote. I had forgotten the "silence".
Events in Ottawa this year had some of the elements of that "silence".
There were only 2 aircraft in the flypast, so the traditional space was missing. The Governor-General wore the uniform of the CAF - Flight. There were many more than usual groups laying wreaths and there was more of the sense that it meant something deep. They will not be forgotten; we will remember them.
Thank you Jan for expressing the UK version that I remember.
Betty Hyland