by Don Crawford
"Please wear a poppy", the lady said,
"But beneath the scars the years had made
"His smile was full of joy and fun,
"The lady smiled in her wistful way
"And because they did, you and I are free
"He loved to play and jump and shout
"He was fine and strong,
with a boyish smile,
"When he smiled at me and said good-bye.
"His letters told us of the awful fight
"That sure did sound like an awful fight,
"I slunk away in a sort of shame,
"And so, when we see a poppy worn,
Why Wear A Poppy by Don Crawford
Handwritten in pencil, and on two sheets of foolscap, Don Crawford turned this poem in to the The Perth Courier one morning in the early 1960s, where it first saw print a few days later. For the next several years, and by means unknown, “Why Wear A Poppy” appeared in nearly every weekly newspaper and magazine, including LEGION, in Canada at Remembrance time, as well as foreign publications like Australia’s Anzac Appeal and Scotland’s Claymore magazine, copies of the same being sent to him. Some years ago, Dominion Command of The Royal Canadian Legion, produced it on slides and tape for television and radio. Schools have used it extensively for their Remembrance programs. Donald J. Crawford died in hospital at Perth on Saturday, October 7, 2000.