Just Once

This poem is about finding peace and unity in a world of conflict and division.

You’re on your island, and I’m here on mine,
and walls and bodies our limits define.
My ideas and traits are not quite like yours,
and each of us finds things that he deplores.
We don’t even know what makes us the same,
so we both take turns at throwing the blame.
I always blame you for doing what you can
to have it your way and to ruin my plan.
And you always blame me for being too strict,
for wanting a future that I can predict.
But we are not alone in being alone—
this world of conflict, we haven’t outgrown.
The world teaches us that we should compete,
that winning is how we make our life sweet.
But, just once, can we look for find a win-win,
and then, perhaps tomorrow, try it again?
For I cannot stand to be on one side,
while differences only serve to divide.
And I cannot see a future to hope for,
while each of us lives behind a locked door.
Maybe, just once, we can lay down our swords,
and learn whether peace has any rewards.
For we have been fighting, age after age,
and I feel that it’s time to turn a new page.
I cannot run from our conflicts or hide,
and I will not rest till I’m on your side.
And if we attempted to find a new way
to bring a real peace to the world today,
we would never forget what we had tried,
and we’d no longer be stuck, just on one side.
And the thought of peace would grow in our mind
until it reached out to all of mankind.
And the whole world would learn, from our small test,
that true peace can extend, both East and West.