Remembrance – a poem by the great John Philips.

I have great admiration for the work of John Philips – both poetic and prose. He has a way of encapsulating a lot of ideas and emotions in a very readable fashion.

A previous post or two of mine have dealt with this subject – about White Poppies and a jingoistic element of remembrance. I felt that Remembrance had been taken over by the establishment and had a celebratory edge to it that I did not like. We should respect and remember, not celebrate.

John deals with the same theme in this poem. I agree with it wholeheartedly.


By John Philips

‘Lest we forget’, the politician said.

His suit of Saville Row, his poppy red

As blood, that bleeds a blood gorged century

Of wars and blatant inequality.


‘Lest we forget,’ the promise and the lie.

A coming land for heroes was the cry

Which echoes vainly down the passing years

Of never-ending struggle, toil and tears.


Lest we forget the myths of glories won,

Legends by propaganda darkly spun

To veil the truth, hide war’s futility

Ignoring youth and human dignity.


Lest we forget the rank hypocrisy

And falsehood which pretends democracy,

Yet doffs its cap to peerage, wealth and fame

To fuel and fire the politician’s game.


John Philips November 2018

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