The Irony of Ploughshares
In the Middle East If you want to prepare for peace You must first prepare for war Because peace must be waged With the same seriousness of intent as war And there are as many obstacles and pitfalls On the path to peace as there are along the path to war. A weak man cannot forge peace because His weakness tempts his enemies to attack And weak are the saber rattlers Hoping to frighten their enemies With simulations of disproportionate force. Their fears and uncertainties blind them To the path of peace. Only a strong man is confident and sees clearly. He walks calmly along the path Narrow as the razor's edge. The path to peace meanders through Gaza Where we've been eyeless and Our plow shares will be made out of swords, Neither flowers Nor gentle breezes.
September 28, 2016
Enough of idle dreams and wishes Enough of sweetness, honey and apples. The light does not come from East And not from West, But from inside us. Peace will not come from one of us But from all of us. There is no time but marching forward To futures where Abraham's progeny Sit together at a table Sharing food and drink And all men's children Play and grow in health Uneducated in the ways of war But wise in the paths of peace, All men necessary on this march because No one knows from whence come saviors, What will be their color or creed, What language they will speak, Whether man, woman, child Or stranger.
October 2, 2016
Making Peace with Ourselves
Most of the time I’m just me And sometimes I’m we But every once in a while, we are them And they are us. It seems to me that everyone Who wants their story heard Would want their own country To tell it loud and clear And the problem with countries Is that nobody will give you one Just because you asked for it nicely And nobody wants to be occupied So, if you still want a country You’re going to have to make life Pretty uncomfortable for the occupiers. I mean when we were them And they were us, Why can’t we remember that? Then maybe we could make peace with ourselves.
March 7, 2020
Poems ©2022 Mike Stone
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…was born in Columbus Ohio, USA, in 1947. He graduated from Ohio State University with a BA in Psychology. He served in both the US Army and the Israeli Defense Forces. Mike moved to Israel in 1978 and lives in Raanana. He has self-published eight books of poetry. Mike is married to Talma. They have 3 sons and 8 grandchildren.