Carpe Diem Distillation – May 17, 2014

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.

© John McCrae

poppies among graves
our crosses marking rows
nature’s muted by guns

’twas recently that
alive and so joyfully
we walked the Earth

remember your goal
bring victory to our home land
now our job is done

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Carpe Diem’s Distillation


1914 – Tanka


they shook their sabers
formed their terrible allies
laid their secret plans
saught motivation
in June Franz Ferdinand died

poor Sarajevo
peace is not your destiny
Princip shot you down
making you a cause for war
nine million men soon would die

the great war t’was named
the war that would end them all
many lives destroyed
with horrid technology
revolutions changed nations

four years and a world
tallied its sad destruction
new powers were born
economy gone hey-wired
will create a second war

this is his story
mankind’s folly never ends
kill your young people
for pride, profit and power
mother’s, sit at home and weep


One hundred years ago, Europe began preparing for what would be called World War One one of the bloodiest conflicts in human history.  In my opinion, probably not only mine, it was just the prelude to the Second World War and the Cold War.

If we look at the planet as just one big country, I think we might be able to safely say, we’ve never ever known a moment of peace in any age. With our wonderful technological capacity though, I think we’ve come to a point where we might want to learn a little self-control.  Never, before the 20th century, have we had the power to destroy ourselves.  That power hasn’t been matched with a new capacity to avoid armed conflict.  I wonder if there’s really anyone out there with the power to stop our leaders from destrying us or our future generations.