Thank you, Katherine and Robert.

I think it impossible for any of us to imagine the sacrifices made for us as we remember those lost.

Pictured are my father’s parents, Robert and Katherine McCallum, in Glasgow in (I am guessing) 1914, 1915… just before my grandfather went off to fight in the First World War.

Robert and his five brothers all fought in various capacities. He alas was subjected to mustard gas on the battlefield in France (although it had been outlawed) and died shortly thereafter. My grandmother meanwhile handled the home and cared for their many children but, sadly, only survived her husband by two years.

I love their confidence in this photo, their hopefulness, the equality between them that shines through. I wish I had known them. I wish I could tell them how proud they make me, here, in Canada, 100 years later, in a life they could not even comprehend.

I hear from the scant stories there were of them that my grandmother was very independent, a real firebrand, and that Robert was a born storyteller and generous in spirit. I’m sure they had faults too but sweetly these never made it into the few stories I have of them.

I thank you, Katherine and Robert, for all that you did and all that you both were.

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Writer and Poet

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Tricia McCallum

Always be a poet. Even in prose.
Charles Baudelaire.

In essence I am a storyteller who writes poems. Put simply, I write the poems I want to read.[…]

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