The Box

Once upon a time, in the land of hush-a-bye,
Around about the wonderous days of yore,
They came across a sort of box
Bound up with chains and locked with locks
And labeled, "Kindly do not touch, it's war."

A decree was issued round about -
All with a flourish and a shout
And a gaily coloured mascot
Tripping lightly on before -
"Don't fiddle with this deadly box
Or break the chains or pick the locks,
And please don't ever mess about with war."

Well the children understood,
Children happen to be good
And were just as good around the time of yore.
They didn't try to pick the locks
Or break into that deadly box
And never tried to play about with war.

Mommies didn't either,
Sisters, Aunts, nor Grannies neither,
'Cos they were quiet and sweet and pretty
In those wonderous days of yore,
Well, very much the same as now,
And not the ones to blame somehow,
For opening up that deadly box of war.

But someone did.

Someone battered in the lid
And spilled the insides out across the floor,
A sort of bouncy, bumpy ball
Made up of flags and guns and all
The tears and horror and death
That goes with war.

It bounced right out
And went bashing all about
And bumping into everything in store.
And what was sad and most unfair
Was that it didn't really seem to care
Much who it bumped, or why,
Or what, or for.

It bumped the children mainly,
And I'll tell you this quite plainly,
It bumps them everyday and more and more,
And leaves them dead and burned and dying,
Thousands of them sick and crying,
'Cos when it bumps, it's very, very sore.

There is a way to stop the ball,
It isn't very hard at all,
All it takes is wisdom
And I'm absolutely sure
We could get it back into the box
And bind the chains and lock the locks,
But no one seems to want to save the children anymore.

Well, that's the way it all appears,
'Cos it's been bouncing round for years,
In spite of all the wisdom wizzed
Since those wonderous days of yore,
And the time they came across that box
Bound up with chains and locked with locks
And labeled, "Kindly do not touch, it's war."

by Kendrew Lascelles

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