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Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Early Memories - UK III


Unlike my other early memories, this one can be matched to an exact date; the 20th July 1969, which would make me five (and the all-important third) years old. The event was man's first landing on the Moon.

In all there were 6 manned landings which means that only 12 people have ever had the privilege of looking back at the Earth from the moon's surface.

I remember watching the Eagle landing, and Armstrong descending the ladder and making his famous "this is one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind" speech. I can also remember watching splash down several days later.

People talk about those momentous events where everyone knows where they were and what they were doing when they heard the news. I believe there have been three such events in my life, The moon landing, Princess Diana's death and the events of 9/11.

The poem below records my memory of the first of these three. I hope you enjoy it.

Early Memories – UK III

Mum and Dad let us stay up
to watch it on TV.
We snuggled round the living room
as Neil made History.
A grainy black and white image
held us all spell bound.
as far above upon the moon
the Lunar Module hit the ground.

John Carré Buchanan
31 January 2012

12 comments:

  1. A very usefull article – Thank you very much I wish you will not mind me blogging about this article on my website I will also link back to this post Thank you

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    Replies
    1. Non Woven, Thank you for your comment, I am pleased that you like my poem on my Early Memory of the Lunar Landing. I would be delighted if you were to link to it or write about it on your. please let me know when you have done so and I will visit it.

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  2. I like the poem.I was 15 when Neil set foot on the moon my Dad woke all the kids up except the baby ( he was 1 1/2) I had one sister (11 at the time)and 4 brothers (age 18,10,8 and 1 1/2) It was amazing .The other two events in my life that I remember exactly where I was are 9/11 and JFK's death.Have a good day Sir

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment on my Blog. I was just a bit to young to remember the JFK assassination, but the impact that that terrible event had still managed to seep into my consciousness.

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  3. "this is one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind" - there were just few words, but so full of hope...

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    Replies
    1. I agree, and yet even these few word have caused so much controversy, did he say this dis he say that. At the end of the day the meaning was pretty clear why try to pick holes in it.

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  4. Nice poem! I like the way it roots so dramatic and grand and massive an event in the hearts of individual people - the wya you begin the poem with

    Mum and Dad let us stay up
    to watch it on TV.

    really personalises the event - I imagine the scene as a cosy living room, so that later when we hear "far above upon the moon", there's a really interesting contrast of scale.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Patent Attorney, Thank you for your kind and detailed comment, it is particularly nice when someone explains why they like a poem, it makes all the difference.

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  5. I'm always asking my parents about when they were allowed to stay up and watch the moon landing, sounds like such a crucial event for everyone who watched it! Loved this post, such a personal look at the event.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you very much for your comment. It was pretty mind blowing for a 5 1/4 year old with parents whose jobs were entwined with the Earthstations.
      My Mother went on to work for NASA in Ascension Island (mid Atlantic) and I remember being able to talk to the Astronauts on Skylab, I even sang happy birthday to one of them as they flew over.
      My mother received a commemorative medallion of the missions, on its reverse it says;
      "This medallion contains metal that traveled [Sic] through space on the world's first space station -- the U.S. Skylab -- on which astronauts Conrad, Kerwin, Weitz, Bean, Garriott, Lousma, Carr, Gibson and Pogue opened a new era in the uses of space"
      Memories eh!

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  6. Love this! You really heighten the sense of nostalgia by including your own personal story and recollection of it, we as a society seemed desensitised to all of that stuff now, but it must have been huge at the time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you very much for your kind comment. I am glad that you liked it.

      Delete

I really appreciate constructive feedback. If you are able to comment it would be most grateful.