John McCrae (Image: Wikipedia/ Public Domain)

100 Years Ago Today: John McCrae wrote ‘In Flanders Fields'

Posted on on 03 May 2015
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It is believed that John McCrae wrote the famous poem ‘In Flanders Fields’ during the evening of May 3rd 1915 – after carrying out a funeral service for a friend during the Second Battle of Ypres.

John McCrae was a Canadian doctor, and is reported to have written the poem while sitting in the back of an ambulance near a battlefield casualty station just north of Ypres.

The poem was published in the British magazine Punch in December 1915, and went on to become highly popular and widely quoted.


In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly.

Scarce heard amid the guns below.


We are the dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved, and were loved, and now we lie

In Flanders fields.


Take up our quarrel with the foe:

To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders fields.


McCrae died of pneumonia in January 1918 – and is buried in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission section of Wimereux Cemetery, near Boulogne, in France.