I normally post a wordy, slightly emotional essay on Remembrance Sunday encouraging people to think not just about the lost and suffering of the two world wars, but about the meaning of Remembrance, the forgotten conflicts like Korea and Aden, and reflect a little on why we do this thing we do annually.
This year, I had a memory triggered back in August, and vowed to share it today. Sadly I’m a little late today as work called. But this piece of musical poetry, from 1983, sums up the loss, devastation and grief caused by war perfectly, but without addressing it directly.
It’s utterly haunting.
It’s performed chillingly a cappella by a lady called Jane Lancaster, the then girlfriend of Manchester poet Edward Barton who wrote it. It was a minor hit in 1983 but passed into obscurity. The video, above, is remarkable.
I heard a fragment of it in late summer, remembered the original, and hunted it out.
The combination of voice, words and film here is stunning to me. Sadly, very little is known about Jane.
For all those lost to war and service of this country, we will remember you. I will continue to endeavour to share the stories of our heroes on this blog, as I always have done, people like Cecil, Levi, and Richard. It is on their shoulders we as a nation stand.
If you want to read my previous polemic on Remembrance, please click here.
Oh, and if the haunting opening words to ‘It’s a Fine Day’ seem familiar, it’s because the first few words were used to create a much bigger dance hit in the 1990s. Jane’s version should not be lost, nor should the meaning. So I share it with you today.
We will remember them.