I’m reposting this blog entry from last year – I’m a bit late this year, but you still have time to make your own poppy! It only takes about half an hour.
Right after Halloween in Canada, poppy pins blossom on lapels across Canada. We have Remembrance Day on November 11th to commemorate the sacrifices of war.
The poppy is a symbol of remembrance, and was popularized after the First World War due to a poem by Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae. Few poppies grew in Flanders, France, before the war broke out; rubble from bombardments enriched the soil with lime, and then the fields exploded with the blood-red flowers. Once the war was over, the lime became reabsorbed and the poppies disappeared.
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.
– Lt. Col. John McCrae
So to help you remember, here’s a little free pattern for a poppy. It knits up very quickly in scrap yarn – I used aran weight black scrap yarn, and triple-stranded Schaefer Anne for the red. You want to use a small needle so that it’s stiff. Finished size is approximately 2 inches across.
Poppies are not bought or sold; people make a contribution for their poppy.
Any donations from this pattern will be given to the Royal Canadian Legion Poppy Fund, which is used to provide immediate assistance to ex-servicemen and women in need. This may include food, shelter or medical attention for them or their families. Also, education bursaries are granted to children and grandchildren of ex-service personnel.
More information about the Royal Canadian Legion Poppy Campaign.
Please make a donation to your local Royal Canadian Legion or other legion group.
We do something similar in the US with the American Legion Auxillary. I used to give out the poppies when I was young now my daughter does it.
Thanks for reminding me – of the day and what it means. When Remembrance Day comes around, or I hear this poem quoted, I always think of this song:
There is a bit of an intro, but it is a performance by the singer/songwriter himself, so worth a listen. The song always makes me feel like I can see the fields, and also makes me feel very sad. And hopeful, that we can learn not to make war any more.
My donation will be going to the American Legion. I made two poppies this morning. One for me, one for my dog. We worked at our LYS today!
Thank you for this pattern, I will have some made for our local American Legion. thank you Karen Lauterwasser for the link, I printed the lyrics.
Thank you so much for sharing this pattern I will be making a few of them.
Thank you so much for the pattern my mum asked me for it as I piurchsed a knitted poppy for her last year and now al her friends would like one so will do some for tomorrow an dthen next year.