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.

In Flanders Fields, written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae of the Canadian Expeditionary Force on May 3, 1915.

Alexis Helmer, a close friend of McCrae, was killed during the Second Battle of Ypres on May 2 1915. McCrae performed the burial service himself, at which time he noted how poppies quickly grew around the graves of those who died at Ypres. The next day, he composed the poem while sitting in the back of an ambulance. Once he had finished writing it, he supposedly crumpled the paper and threw it away. It was later picked up by a fellow member of his unit who convinced him to submit the poem for publication.

He died of pneumonia on January 28, 1918, while still commanding No. 3 Canadian General Hospital at Boulogne. 

(via fuckyeahcanadianforces)