THE founder of a Pembrokeshire charity had his poem read out by the First Minister at a recent remembrance event.

Today marks the day First World War hostilities ended back on November 11, 1918, and honours those who died in the line of duty for their country.

Barry John, of the VC Gallery in Haverfordwest, wrote a poem in commemoration of those who fought.

Barry said that at the heart of the poem is a link between the past and the present.

“The essence is about what remembrance is to us right now, reflecting on the past but also being conscious of the present."

Barry’s poem was whittled down from 55 sent in by the VC Gallery to 10, and then chosen to be read at the service.

Barry said that is was a shock his was the poem of choice.

“I was a little embarrassed because I run the charity and we had some really professionally written works sent.”

On reading the poem, First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “Last night (November 6) I gave a reading at the Wales Festival of Remembrance to commemorate all those who have served and sacrificed.

“The poem was written by Barry John from the VC Gallery. I want to thank him and all his volunteers for all their work for veterans.”

Held every year at St David’s Hall, Cardiff, Wales Festival of Remembrance is the nation’s chance to come together to commemorate all those who lost their lives in conflict.

Barry’s poem is below.

Patient public, driving rain, November’s damp song;

Armistice holds us true

History and the now combine, Cold hands, misty breath;

Armistice holds us true


Loss and sacrifice written in stone. Mixed with plastic reds;

Armistice holds true.

Bravery and loss entwined, the band strikes its tune;

Armistice holds us true


The silence and reveille, Bash of polished boots;

Armistice holds us true.

Inspirational sadness and desperate times, the children sing its tune;

Armisitce holds us true


The medals, the tears, Wash with the rain;

Armistice holds us true.

Side by side with the anthem. Respect for the then and respect for now,


And Armistice holds us true.