Lapel Poppies are worn across the nation to honor Canada's veterans during the Remembrance period, which lasts from the last Friday in October until the evening of November 11th. While wearing a Poppy is an outward symbol of respect and remembrance, it is important to take some time to reflect inwards as well.
"Thanks to the millions of Canadians who wear the Legion’s lapel Poppy each November, the little red flower has never died, and the memories of those who fell in battle remain strong," the Royal Canadian Legion reminds Canadians of the importance of wearing the Poppy.
Unsure how to appropriately wear a Poppy pin? The Royal Canadian Legion recommends wearing the Poppy on the left side, respectfully over the heart. The Legion’s lapel Poppy is a sacred symbol of Remembrance and should not be affixed with any pin that obstructs the Poppy, according to their appropriate Poppy Protocol. The Legion acknowledges that wearing a Poppy is a personal expression of Remembrance; therefore, it is up to the individual how they choose to respectfully wear the Poppy.
Whenever a Poppy is removed, it should be stored appropriately or disposed of respectfully. Many Canadians choose to affix it to a wreathe as a sign of respect after the Remembrance Day Ceremony or at the end of the day on November 11th. If you happen to find a Poppy on the ground, pick it up and brush it off so that it can be kept or disposed of respectfully.
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.
Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae ~ May 3, 1915
(As published in Punch Magazine, December 8, 1915)