There I was researching poppies when I came across this man:
To cut a very long story short, during the Qin Dynasty, Xiang Yu was known as one of the greatest Chinese warriors and a warlord. He was a very big man and a man of great strength. His consort, Yu, was so in love with him she followed him everywhere and stayed with him throughout his battles. However when he started to lose and things were looking a bit hopeless, she picked up his sword and danced with it trying to ease his sadness. She later used his sword to commit suicide and poppies were said to have grown where she fell. When all was truly hopeless, Xiang Yu also committed suicide rather than be taken prisoner.
It seems poppies can’t help being associated with death but also with sleep, dreams and peace.
Having said all that this next charity shop find gives off a completely different feel. It is, I think, done with pastels and signed by the artist Christine Dracup. I can’t find Christine anywhere but quite a bit of her work is on Etsy and EBay but nothing is dated later than the 1990s as far as I can see. This one is dated 1998. I think it is quite beautiful and I wonder why it was discarded.