Sunday, 9 November 2014

Field Of Souls

By Lucy Wall

Between the 17th of July and the 11th of November 2014, a major art installation was placed around the Tower of London to mark the one hundred year anniversary of the first full day of Britain's involvement in the First World War. Created by artists Paul Cummins and Tom Piper, 888,246 hand-made ceramic poppies were placed within the Tower's famous moat with each poppy representing a British military fatality suffered during the war. It was on the 8th of November that year that my husband and I decided to visit the exhibition and witness for ourselves the dramatic views that the poppies created.

After my initial thrill and awe at the vibrancy and sheer volume of poppies, the magnitude of the losses suffered during the war began to really hit me. As I stared at the poppies and considered what they represented I suddenly didn't feel like I was looking at a field of flowers anymore but rather I felt like I was staring at a field of souls. It was this thought that inspired me to start writing my poem.