Langston Hughes: A mighty army serving human kind, not an army geared to kill
We passed their graves:
The dead men there,
Winners or losers,
Did not care.
In the dark
They could not see
Who had gained
Give Us Our Peace (1945)
Give us a peace equal to the war
Or else our souls will be unsatisfied,
And we will wonder what we have fought for
And why the many died.
Give us a peace of accepting every challenge –
The challenge of the poor, the black, of all denied,
The challenge of the vast colonial world
That long has had so little justice by its side.
Give us a peace that dares us to be wise.
Give us a peace that dares us to be strong.
Give us a peace that dares us still uphold
Throughout the peace our battle against wrong.
Give us a peace that is not cheaply used,
A peace that is no clever scheme,
A people’s peace for which men can enthuse,
A peace that brings reality to our dream.
Give us a peace that will produce great schools –
As the war produced great armament,
A peace that will wipe out our slums –
As war wiped out our foes on evil bent.
Give us a peace that will enlist
A mighty army serving human kind,
Not just an army geared to kill,
But trained to help the living mind.
An army trained to shape our common good
And bring about a world of brotherhood