Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Saddest Month

T S Eliot wrote that "April is the saddest month" I don't understand why he did that. For me April is new beginnings, it is early Spring, all around new life is coming forth. There are daffodils along the hedgerows and by the Lakes in the magical Lake District. A primrose peeps up in a wood. Buds are on the trees. It can be cold and blowy, it is possible for snow to descend but there is never anything sad about April for me. Of course there is Easter and Good Friday if you are a Christian, and that is a very sad day but there is Easter Day with the promise of life and all good things.

For me the saddest month is November. It has nothing to do with dark nights (although they can really make you feel miserable) or the fact that the leaves have all but left the trees and lie in soggy piles on pavements. No, it is none of these. I think of the 11th November. The day the Armistice was signed. A recent television programme related the little known fact that because the signing was at 11.00 a.m. young men were still being killed on that day. Stupid generals were insisting their men still fought on. I think the last soldier to die was a young American at around 11.00 a.m.

November makes me feel so sad, it always has. I think of my grandfather and other lads like him fighting in a war that brought them nothing. Remembrance of the First World War should never be forgotten, even though it is for me the reason that November is the "saddest month."

I remember going to Ypres and to the daily ceremony at the Menin Gate. There were lots of school children there, chatting in the way they do and I thought oh what a shame they don't realise the significance. Me of little faith - the moment the Fire Brigade band came they fell silent and respectful. They were wonderful.

Let's think of all service personnel this month. We send them to war zones I never hear them complain. In the words of a cheerful song "Bless 'em All."

3 comments:

LondonStow said...

Love the blog!

LondonStow said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LondonStow said...
This comment has been removed by the author.