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A modern poem for Remembrance Day

One of nearly 400 memorials at The National Memorial Arboretum in Alrewas, Staffordshire

A Hymn for Remembrance Sunday

May be used as a prayer or sung to the music, Finlandia, by Jean Sibelius

Grant peace, O Lord, across our strife-torn world,
Where war divides and greed and dogma drive.
Help us to learn the lessons from the past,
That all are human and all pay the price.
All life is dear and should be treated so;
Joined, not divided, is the way to go.

Protect, dear Lord, all who, on our behalf,
Now take the steps that place them in harm’s way.
May they find courage for each task they face
By knowing they are in our thoughts always.
Then, duty done and missions at an end,
Return them safe to family and friends.

Grant rest, O Lord, to those no longer with us;
Who died protecting us and this their land.
Bring healing, Lord, to those who, through their service,
Bear conflict’s scars on body or in mind.
With those who mourn support and comfort share.
Give strength to those who for hurt loved-ones care.

And some there be who no memorial have;
Who perished are as though they’d never been.
For our tomorrows their today they gave,
And simply asked that in our hearts they’d live.
We heed their call and pledge ourselves again,
At dusk and dawn – we will remember them!

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

We will remember them.

Charles Henrywood, 2009

From The War Poetry website  and the book, Remembrance Poems and Readings.

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Remembrance Day – Sources of Remembrance Poems and Readings

The sculpture by Ian Rank-Broadley is perhaps the best known memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum at Alrewas in Staffordshire. It was inspired by the Ancient Greek tradition of carrying dead heroes from the field of battle on a shield. Here the shield has been replaced by a stretcher and a grieving family has been added.

The memorial park is dedicated to all Britain’s armed and non-combatant services.

“The National Memorial Arboretum is a British site of national remembrance.  Its objective is to honour the fallen, recognise service and sacrifice, and foster pride in the British Armed Forces and civilian community.”

There are almost 400 memorials on this 150 acre site. We visited in August this year. It is an impressive and moving place to visit.

A version of the picture above is featured on the cover of my book, Remembrance poems and Readings.

Book of Remembrance Poems

Remembrance poems and Readings

This book contains a comprehensive collection of readings for Remembrance services and includes a discussion of the changing nature of remembrance events. There are poems that go beyond remembrance to offer hope for a world with sustainable peace.

A range of Remembrance poems freely available on the internet

You can explore traditional readings and a wide selection of Remembrance poems by living service personnel on my website,