The ‘Peace Process’ Dies again – A Poem

How does one speak to a four-year-old child, Of processes, politics, quid pro quos? (

By Gary Corseri

There is no “peace process.”

There is peace… and the absence of peace—

The gnawing hunger for it,

The desperation of the vanquished.


Does the peace dove fly with a shattered wing?

The shattered wing is the wing of war.

War is a sieve capturing humanity.

Blood seeps out of the mouths of the sieve.


How does one speak to a four-year-old child

Of processes, politics, quid pro quos?

No mother dresses the wounds of the child.

Her mother’s eyes stare in wonder forever.


And we wonder: Do laws since time immemorial,

All proclamations, all declarations

Matter in the eyes of a hurt, dying child?

Have men proven their manhood again in her eyes?


Fools in high places clamor for war; fools follow,

Fearing not following. Platitudes murder

For the sake of murdering—for fools

In high places and fools following.


No one dare speak the Truth of the soul.

The tax-paying herd takes succor in soccer.

My team, my tribe, my country, myself—nothing

Else matters, no one else counts, unseeing


The eyes of a child looking in wonder:

What did she do to bring on such anger?

What did her mother do, staring forever?

Why is her father so still in the rubble?


War crimes and genocide, honor, dishonor.

Where to begin, where does it end?

All the entanglements—hatred and loving.

The State… The Nation… The People… The–


How does one speak to a four-year-old child

Of processes, politics, quid pro quos?

With all the lexicons, all the professors—

No one has learned the language of children.

– Gary Corseri has published his articles, poetry and fiction in The Palestine Chronicle, and hundreds of periodicals and websites worldwide. He has published two novels, two collections of poetry, and a literary anthology. He has performed his work at the Carter Presidential Library, and his dramas have been produced on PBS-Atlanta and elsewhere. He has taught in public schools and prisons in the US, and at universities in the US and Japan.

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