Northern France, Commonwealth War Graves

Commonwealth war Graves Boulogne

It was early, peaceful and eerily serene and apart from a gardener carefully tending the flowers and the occasional snipping of his secateurs around the graves we were the only people there and there was no sound and I was struck by the quiet solemness that seemed to lay heavily on this place. Each gravestone is the same regardless of rank and they line up in rows as though they were soldiers on a parade ground.

Most of these victims of war were obscenely young but what struck me the most was that many were buried here but simply marked in the words of Rudyard Kipling as ‘An unknown soldier of the Great War’.  I didn’t care to think about the horrific injuries that they must have endured that stripped away their identity.

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9 responses to “Northern France, Commonwealth War Graves

  1. My son is twenty so the thought of all those young men killed before they had a chance to live hits a nerve. I’m also struck by the lost potential. I’m sure most of these boys would’ve been loving husbands and fathers and successful in their chosen field if they’d had the chance. War is the ultimate waste of our greatest resource–young people.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Not on my to do list, Andrew, though I can understand the desire to pay your respects. I’m currently reading an Istanbul based novel when the city was under British occupation. The Armenians are the outcasts in this saga. Terrible the things that happened in the name of war. How those youngsters ever slept again afterwards…? Will the world be a more peaceful place for our grandkids? The lessons are all there to be learnt, aren’t they?
    Viva Italia 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I can’t help but wonder what it is in human nature that creates these utterly useless wars. We simply don’t seem to learn.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sad, a grim reminder of the past, Andrew, and a reminder of how many of our youth we have condemned to death. But it is good that their resting place is so peaceful. –Curt

    Liked by 1 person

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