Page:In Flanders Fields and Other Poems.djvu/69

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John McCrae

I


"In Flanders Fields", the piece of verse from which this little book takes its title, first appeared in Punch in the issue of December 8th, 1915. At the time I was living in Flanders at a convent in front of Locre, in shelter of Kemmel Hill, which lies seven miles south and slightly west of Ypres. The piece bore no signature, but it was unmistakably from the hand of John McCrae.

From this convent of women which was the headquarters of the 6th Canadian Field Ambulance, I wrote to John McCrae, who was then at Boulogne, accusing him of the authorship, and furnished him with evidence. From memory—since at the front one carries one book only—I quoted to him another piece of his own verse, entitled "The Night Cometh":

"Cometh the night. The wind falls low,
The trees swing slowly to and fro;
 Around the church the headstones grey
 Cluster, like children stray'd away,
But found again, and folded so."