In 1919, a dedicated and patriotic woman named Moina Michael launched a movement to honor war veterans through the wearing and selling of silk poppies. She was inspired by the poem In Flanders Fields by John McCrae.
I remember these silk poppies from my childhood but I don't see them much anymore. And I knew nothing of their history. Then a few years ago, I met Barbara Walsh at a Highlights Founders Workshop. I still remember Barb's passion about her father's WWII experience and Moina Michael, who honored him and so many other vets by starting the wearing of the poppy on Memorial Day.
Barbara wanted to tell Moina's amazing story in a book for children. After much work and commitment, her dream is about to come true. This fall, The Poppy Lady will be released by Calkins Creek books.
Barbara and her father are featured in the following video by GA Public Broadcasting which tells the Moina story so beautifully. I think you'll see what I mean about passion - both Moina's and Barbara's!
"My dream is the same as Moina's dream. I want every American to wear a poppy and I want it to be that each time they pin that poppy on they remember what the soldiers have sacrificed for us." (Barbara Walsh, picture book author)
I don't know where I'll find a silk poppy for sale today but I bet I could make one. And the garden center could sell me the real thing - right? Thank you Barbara for the inspiration. And especially, thanks to your Dad and all the other vets and servicemen!