In solitude the leader stands,

Under shadow of the jibe and taunt;

Response! Response! Clamour demands,

Shall chosen course return to haunt?


In vitriolic bile or accolade,

He must face the silent dead;

A sacrifice that will not fade,

Perhaps the shame of blame laid.


The dilemma his, nowhere to turn,

As suspicion of Advisors reign;

Some who advocate to waste and burn;

But on him the lasting stain.


Right or wrong, for war or peace?

His breast churns to find a way;

An honourable path for his release,

To fight, surrender or delay?


Should he be stalwart and face the foe,

Who throws the gauntlet down?

Or try the seeds of peace to sow,

Behind a smile that hides a frown?


Future ranks of dead with ghostly stare,

From beneath war’s sombre pall;

The widows, orphans left to fare;

Friend and foe to suffer all.


Task wisdom’s prayer your daily guide,

With prudent sword withheld from sight;

Succumb not to vanity or pride;

Time will tell when ye must fight!


Monty Alexander 26.10.06

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