Poppies and new beginnings....

Returning to the woods where she once spebt many hours memories flooded through her. Can she remeber the good times and set aside the bad and heartbreak to continue on with her life?
A short story.


1. Old Memories.

The misted woodlands were silent. The only noise was my footsteps, each waking a little more of the sleepy forest. To my left was a haven of poppies; each and everyone a deep red making the otherwise black and white picture vibrant. I hadn't returned here for a while. Too many memories were created, many happy but a few devastating. Here surrounded by the old, twisted trees that looked like giant walking canes, the engulfing mist that seemed to wrap its arms around me like a mothers arms, the stream that reflected the little light making it seem silver, breakable ~ like my feelings. Poppies one after the other each representing a loved one lost, blood, toil and battle.


Flashback..... The Somme 1917. The deadly battle killing millions. Bombs whistling overhead, bright bursts of flame lighting up the indifferent opaque, black night. It was like the solution to peace was unknown ~ maybe the solution was war. Trenches nearly over flowing with men; some wise and experienced, others, naive boys and men maybe 17, were excited from either the fact that they were at war or maybe running on adrenaline. The experienced Sergeant Major, sat on a step made of the mud from the ground riddled with bullets, shaking his head in despair. Having no idea what was ahead of them when the advance signal was yelled, the younger ones went first darting ahead like hounds after their prey. Nearing the back followed the more reluctant men. Many shell~shocked, not physically ill had to return. Running along side Robert was William both as eager to kill as many of the foe that was humanly possible, neither realising the danger his own life was in. One shot from a deadly gun to the heart and that man would be dead. Robert aimed as he had been trained, finger on the trigger, this was the moment he had been waiting for. To be shot? No. Not even freezing he dropped to the ground lifeless joining yet another body on the grave situated on no mans land. Yet another family would be receiving a telegram home reading, 'Your son is missing believed dead.' The cold, typewritten words allowing no one to become close to them..... End of flash back..... Everything that he had said to me in his letters rang proud and clear in my mind as i continued to sit in the dense field of poppies. Just me and my thoughts.


A year ago I walked the same path. The weather had been glorious the whole feel different. Poppies were beginning to wake after their long sleep but i hadn't noticed them. I was going to miss the tall, handsome, straight sailing man by my side. I may never see the way his eyes lit up when something was humorous. There in the forest, i thought that my world was shutting down when he told me that he was going to war... I was sorrowful, wondering how i would get through the days that would suddenly become so long and the nights so cold. I sighed. I had heard no news from my loved one for 2 months now. Once again i thanked god that my beloved was even alive. Now i know that i am able to draw comfort from the towering but withered trees, that almost seem ageless and had been able to survive the tough storms the weather threw at them. The poppies still stained a dull crimson, dauntless, were not going to let anything over power them. Feeling a fiery strength wash over me i knew i was not alone. These poppies, doing their job, represents the strength and determination of everyone; not only the bravery of the soldiers but of everyone left at home.



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