Remember … The Dream? The Day It Died?

It’s that time again, Memorial day. A time to remember the dead. Those innumerable lives lost in the wars against ideologies, aggression, and often in aid of promoting ignorance and greed. We are far from being a pacifist race. We hairless apes like a good dust up. The more violent the better, right? MMA, Boxing, Roller Derby? Remember them?



The practice of decorating soldiers’ graves with flowers is an ancient custom. Soldiers’ graves were decorated in the U.S. before and during the American Civil War. A claim was made in 1906 that the first Civil War soldier’s grave ever decorated was in Warrenton, Virginia on June 3, 1861, implying the first Memorial Day occurred there. There is authentic documentation that women in Savannah, Georgia decorated soldiers’ graves in 1862. In 1863, the cemetery dedication at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania was a ceremony of commemoration at the graves of dead soldiers. Local historians in Boalsburg, PA, claim that ladies there decorated soldiers’ graves on July 4, 1864. As a result, Boalsburg promotes itself as the birthplace of Memorial Day. — Wikipedia


Celebrating and remembering the dead is the best you can do after you decided to send them off to die? It seems the decent thing to do, right? Just monkeys killing monkeys killing monkeys…


The value of war …


Remember the dead of wars

Nagasaki remembers…

We saw Hiroshima today — or what little is left of it. We were so shocked with what we saw that most of us felt like weeping; not out of sympathy for the Japs but because we were revolted by this new and terrible form of destruction. Compared to Hiroshima, Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne are practically untouched … The sickly sweet smell of death is everywhere.

  — photographer Bernard Hoffman — September 3, 1945, to LIFE’s long-time picture editor, Wilson Hicks

Yes, remembering the dead is the best thing that we can do. There’s no point in thanking them silently before picking up and spending all the war money on space travel. There’s no point really in thinking their sacrifices are really worth something more than creating space between this war and the next. Lets not forget the past, lets live there. Lets not look to the future… it’s a daft and scary place. Just ask Neil:
Yes, remember the dead and what they died for. When we stop dreaming it will be all we have left to do.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on that sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Dylan Thomas

  1. Monkeys killing monkeys, remembering the dead monkeys, finds a little distraction then continues killing monkeys, remembers the dead monkeys and so the circus continues

    • J_Agathokles
    • May 25th, 2013

    Human wars are just a continuation of the competition for resources and territory. It’s always been part of life, since the first life-form that successfully reproduced itself, and it will be right there with life when the last form of life finally dies. Conflict spurs innovation to increase competitivity (I don’t think that’s a word, but I currently find myself unable to recall the more correct word), and thus also promotes scientific advances. Conflict and war is of fundamental importance to humankind and to all life that roams this world and the worlds that are scattered across the skies, orbiting distant suns. And war also holds in itself the promise of peace, for without peace war can not exist. The knowledge, understanding, and especially the experience of war, makes one appreciate peace all the more.

    • I believe you to be right about war. We are, after all, animals. This thing we call intelligence has not been enough to get all of us fighting on the same side: humanity against the galaxy. There are plenty of resources out there to be had, whole planets even…. it’s sad.

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