There nestled two villages –

on opposite sides of

a majestic mountain

but never had the twain –

seen each other.


There nestled two villages –

idyllic and as pretty as could be

heady with the fragrance of roses but –

Red in one and White in the other.


There nestled two villages –

with beauteous women and men

that strutted with chests puffed and swords –

that gleamed and glistened.


And then one day, there arose a rumour –

skies darkened and lightning struck

and blood thirsty cries rose  –

in a thunderous and murderous chorus.


“How can Roses be Red?”

“How can Roses be White!”

“How can that possibly be true?”

“Kill those liars! Kill for ’tis definitely untrue!”


And so, they disbelieved each other and cried –

 “Sharpen your swords! Get on your horses!”

“Kill those liars! And save your souls!”

“For our truth is the only Truth!”

“For it cannot  –

otherwise be!”


And so they clawed and clambered

to the top of the majestic mountain

and fought and fought and fought

and their children and their children –

too fought.


And killed and killed and killed

For their truths –

Roses could only be Red!

Roses could only be White!

How could it possibly be otherwise!


And they continue to disbelieve each other –

And continue to fight

their bloody and brutal fight

and trample upon Roses both –

Red and White

And now there are Roses –

No more.


And now there are children –

no more.


Filed under Life, Meditation, Mindfulness, Peace, People Portraits, Philosophy, Poetry, Religion, Spirituality, War

16 responses to “SWORDS AND ROSES

  1. Robert

    Dear Anjali,

    Thank you for this very wonderful, very powerful, poem. This so powerfully expresses the truth (which I sense we all intuitively know) that, if I harm you, I harm me.

    What if, what if, we (humanity) are actually one collective body? One body. It is one body which lives…and dies.

    Thank you again.

    All good wishes,


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Robert for your always thought provoking comments. I think you are quite right – this world, this universe, and us (humanity) are indeed one world but we have this false identification of being separate. Our big egos, prevent our hearts from becoming big and consequently – we forget we are one. I hope for all our sakes, that more and more will see the unity and the oneness and the ‘one body’ that lives…and dies…
      Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Robert

        Dear Anjali,

        I like how you worded this: “Our big egos, prevent our hearts from becoming big…” It led to an image in my mind’s eye of a large heart, with the ego, her servant, inside her, instead of the other way around.

        Thank you for your presence in my life.

        All good wishes,



      • Thank you Robert for bestowing such honour upon me with your kind words. Thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Very powerful and poignant piece Anjali.
    I hope you had a very merry Christmas, full of love and warmth.
    🙂 ❤


  3. mp

    Lovely thoughts. …lovely message. …..r u good at prose or poetry. …if only our rulers realise this .message..then the world will be a better place to live. Congrats

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A fine proverb telling the evils of war.


    • Thank you very much for your comment and the visit! I visited your blog and noticed that you’ve been published in the Fall issue ‘Delight’. Am so very glad to know a fellow writing pilgrim – you can find my little ‘A summer haiku’ in the same issue of Delight! 🙂


    • Thank you for your visit and your thoughtful comment.


  5. Your story of roses and swords is powerful in content and almost lyrical in its beauty. The content can be read in the background of war, hatred and violent radicalism that is rearing its ugly head with unfailing regularity in different parts of the world in the form of cold-blooded massacre of school children, merciless genocide and murder in the name of religious outrage. Your poem is a strong pointer to forge understanding of the essential oneness of humanity instead of courting divisions in the name of religious dogma and narrow sectarian interests. Anjali, this poem of yours is also reminiscent of Joan Baez’s famous song, “where have all the flowers gone?” ….best wishes….Raj.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Rajagopalji for your very thoughtful comment. You have very rightly grasped my intent – it was indeed written as a response to the painful events of recent times. My heart hurts at all the pain that is all around us. But we must also remember all the positives that abound but aren’t always noticed. Thank you for bringing my attention to the very beautiful song by Joan Baez. Thank you and best wishes…!

      Liked by 1 person

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