From disturbed earth you rise like a phoenix,
Your skirts of fire and black, black heart.
Disturbs our lives, a short interval, to stop;
And gaze on your simple beauty.
At the end of the year, with the days grown cold;
Your short life in fields of gold, long gone.
We come to you; use your paper twin with rosemary,
To remember the fallen, husbands, fathers and pals.
You have your glorious day in village and city,
When you bring tears and memories, of faces lost from sight.
The flower of youth, who will never grow old,
Shattered lives, united for a day to wear you with pride.
But to pluck you is to destroy you,
Not for you the vase on the alter, the cross or wreath.
Scarlet opium queen who reigns over clover and corn,
We can only imitate your splendour to pin on our breast.