The 11th November is Remembrance Day in England and in most countries of the Commonwealth and every year a parade is held in London to remember those who lost their lives in World War I.
The tradition was started by King George V in 1919 and the red poppy has been associated with Remembrance Day due to the poem "In Flanders Fields" by Canadian Physician Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, who inspired a University Professor Moina Michael, to write the poem "We Shall Remember" vowing to wear a poppy on the anniversary. The custom spread and poppies have thus become a symbol of the blood spilled.
Even though Remembrance Day is on 11/11 because that's when the hostilities formally ended, I associate the whole month of November with Remembrance. And despite the Great War is the main conflict considered, every soldier fallen in the service of the British Armed Forces is remembered. An event is held at the Albert Hall to commemorate their lives and thousands upon thousands of paper poppy petals are left to fall from the ceiling during minutes of silence, each of which represent a life lost.
If you ever watched the event on TV, you may have felt that sense of infinity as the petals fall and got the idea of just how many lives were lost.
I don't know anyone who fought in WWI or II, maybe some of my great-grand parents, or their parents, who were Italian. Most of my family comes from Italy, so I find it hard to believe that none of them were involved or affected in some way.
My father's grandfather was Italian and he emigrated to Argentina some time before 1926. My dad tells me that he refused to talk about Italy or even speak Italian. So to this day, I can only imagine what horrors he might have seen, or what he might have lost, that he never wanted to talk about it.
So to remember every single person fallen in combat, not just in WWI or in the Commonwealth for that matter, but in the world, and not just soldiers but victims too, I made three different poppies necklaces this year.
This is my way to remember, this is my way to wish for peace all around the world.
The traditional red poppy.
An "Ethereal" poppy, whose fading red colour symbolizes our transient existence.
A blue ethereal poppy.
If you'd like to own or surprise someone with one of my poppies, you can find them in my Shop.