Sunday, September 11, 2011

Lest We Forget

On the morning of September 11, 2001, nineteen terrorists from the Islamist extremist group, al Qaeda, hijacked four commercial airplanes, deliberately crashing two of the planes into the upper floors of the North and South Towers of the World Trade Center complex and a third plane into the Pentagon in Arlington, VA. The Twin Towers ultimately collapsed because of the damage sustained from the impacts and the resulting fires. After learning about the other attacks, passengers on the fourth hijacked plane, Flight 93, fought back, and the plane was crashed into an empty field in western Pennsylvania about 20 minutes by air from Washington, DC.
The attacks killed nearly 3,000 people from 93 nations. 2,753 people were killed in New York,  184 people were killed at the Pentagon, and 40 people were killed on Flight 93.

Ode of Remembrance
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 her tears.

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

They shall not grow 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.

Lest We Forget

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables at home;
They have no lot in our labour of the daytime;
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 will 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.

Lest We Forget

English poet Laurence Binyon, overwhelmed by the carnage and loss of life by British and Allied forces in World War 1, penned one of the most moving tributes the world has known to those who died in war.

Originally titled For the Fallen, the ode first appeared in The Times of London on September 21, 1914. It has now become known in Australia and Canada as the Ode of Remembrance.  I think that on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 it is a fitting memorial.  After the verse in bold is recited in memory of those who died, it is followed by the response, "Lest we forget" as I have added it above.


silvereagle said...

Most fitting for this day and for the other days of rememberance of the ones who traveled this life before us.

JiEL said...


That's what we need now..
Peace in our hearts,
Peace in our relationships,
Peace in our families,
Peace with the whole world,
Peace is the answer to everything
that saddly injured the earth as
a common home.

As a Canadian, I'm with you, American, on this sad remembrance day.

A better future is the main goal for us to aim without forgetting the errors of the past and making it a better world to live in for ALL....


becca said...

nope no forgetting

JoeBlow said...

Thanks, silvereagle. I thought so too.

What a beautiful tribute, JiEL. It's always wonderful to have the Canadians with us.

Becca, we will never be able to forget, especially those of us who woke up to the news of this that fateful morning.

fan of casey said...

Joe: Thanks for your remembrance.

JoeBlow said...

You're welcome, FOC, and thanks for reading.