By Christianah Babajide

Did you actually know the cost of war
When you signed on to join the Army?
With your innocent minds and eager smiles
Did you realize…
The battlefield is not a playground

You’ve been brainwashed and fooled by the Old lie:
It is sweet and fitting to die for one’s country.
All they talk about is the pride of fighting for your motherland,
but nobody mentions the drums of death that beat in the battleground.

Who says “it is sweet and fitting to die for one’s country”
Who makes the decisions about these wars?
Who is profiting from them?
Who is slurping from the blood of the dead?
Who is playing God and at what cost?
Knowing fully well that death walks hand in hand with war.

They promised comfort, you’re living like refugees,
In your own mind, in your own body, in your own land.
They promised laughter, you’re drowning in your guilt
They promised success, you just lost half your men.
They said the war wouldn’t change you…
just who is that man in the mirror?

Rapid fire! He sways,in shock, almost unaware.
Then drops like a hot potato
That was my brother. We all lost a brother.
I want him back, not his broken limbs or fractured nose.
I want the whole package. His eyes were hazel.
It should have been me.

Now you are consumed by this guilt…
Your heart sinks lower than the Titanic,
He joined the war, not realizing people would actually have to die.
He never realized the horror of it,
Until he’d lost himself,
A baby with a gun
Lost in the bloody nightmare.

God only knows what we’re fighting for…
to live like animals even though we’re men
for our own neighbours not to recognize us?
Or is it for their names to be in history books?

Well, if that’s the compromise of war
it is not enough.
Your humanity is priceless
and losing yourself is unforgivable.

If I survive the stench of hell, they may praise me for my victory
but their cheers will never be loud enough.
They cannot praise me enough for what I have lost.
I have lost the very thing that made me human.

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