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The cost of War

We may justify war, citing defence and security;
We may condemn it, invoking peace and humanity.
We may blame it on religion, politics of region, or the gaping historical scars.
We may loathe hate-breeders, overambitious leaders, or their ravenous thirst for power.

But the ones who know it’s impact the most,
are the ones who pay an exorbitant cost.
Let’s go and ask a soldier’s mother, his kids and wife,
who have been stranded in war for the rest of their lives.

Ask the young woman carrying her newborn (or unborn) child, walking miles;
or kids who had to leave their toys and books, at the mercy of missiles.
The cost of war isn’t measured in dollars spent or trade affected,
it’s measured in terms of families shattered and lives impacted.

There’s no winner that emerges from war.
The only things that do emerge, are
the cries of bereaved, the vacuum in their families;
the pain of refuge, and the shameful defeat of humanity.

We may justify war or condemn it as we may,
But the ones who know it’s cost, are the ones who have to pay.

About this poem

Ever since the mankind started keeping a log of its history, the only event that has been consistent throughout that phase is ‘War’. We comfortably keep debating for (sometimes) or against (mostly) It, thinking that we all know the genesis and implications of war. But who would know the implications and cost of War than the ones who actually pay the cost of it. This poem is an honest attempt to explore that aspect of war.

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Submitted by RhymingVibes on July 29, 2022

Modified on April 07, 2023

56 sec read

Quick analysis:

Closest metre Iambic heptameter
Characters 1,036
Words 188
Stanzas 5
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4, 2

Prashant Bhatt

Dr. Prashant Bhatt is a Physician by Profession, and a Poet by Passion. He writes poems and songs in English, Hindi and Punjabi. Practising Internal Medicine in India, gave him an opportunity to experience and witness myriad of human emotions related to life. That has been inspiring him to write on life, with humanity and social equality being his favourite food for thought. He maintains blog of his poems at www.rhymingvibes.com more…

All Prashant Bhatt poems | Prashant Bhatt Books

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Discuss the poem "The cost of War" with the community...

  • DougHaberman
    Very moving and, unfortunately, it always seems to apply, no matter the era.
    LikeReply 110 months ago
    • RhymingVibes
      Thanks for reading and sharing your views. Hopefully things will change for better.
      LikeReply10 months ago
  • janet_1
    So true, this poem. It touches my breaking heart for those victims of war.
    LikeReply 110 months ago
    • RhymingVibes
      Thanks for reading and sharing your views. Much appreciated.
      LikeReply10 months ago
  • anthosebas
    Very well said about the current reality of life. Hope this poems reach to many especially people that causing the war. We need peace and humanity that can make a difference in lives.
    LikeReply 110 months ago
    • RhymingVibes
      Thanks for taking the pain of going through this poem. Your views and endorsement mean a lot. And hopefully things will change for better.
      LikeReply 110 months ago


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"The cost of War" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 7 Jun 2023. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/133829/the-cost-of-war>.

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