Neil Comess-Daniels

Children of War

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By: Neil Comess-Daniels

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Children of War

  • By: Neil Comess-Daniels
  • Voice & Guitar: Neil Comess-Daniels
  • Brad Cobb: Bass & Piccolo Bass
  • Dave Karasony: Drums
  • Piano: Clarence McDonald
  • Cello: Lynn Harrell
  • Other vocals: Jim Gilstrap, Maxayn Lewis and Margaret Marston
  • Recorded by Brad Cobb and Alan Abrahams
  • Mixed by Brad Cobb
  • Produced by Brad Cobb and Alan Abrahams ©A Deer in Paradise

You’ll be our symbol, don’t you know
Should you survive, should you survive
Or our martyr by the road
If you die, if you die
But you have face and a soul and a name
That we steal these from you is our
burden and our shame
Children of war, we will hold you
Children of war, we will enfold you.
We battle fire with more flame
And you burn and you burn
And then we do it all again
We never learn, we never learn
We cage the tranquil dove with no
thought for release
While in mosque, church and temple
we sing our songs of peace
Children of war, we will hold you
Children of war, we will enfold you.
We use your bodies and your time,
Abuse your innocence and your minds
You are the banner that we raise
A lame excuse along our way
We use your beauty as our shield
To hide the cru’lties we would wield
This mountain of fear is so high; it’s so high
These waters of hate are so wide, yes, so wide
But we’ll paint you a rainbow over steel stained skies
Make swords into plowshares and truth out of lies
Children of war, we will hold you
Children of war, we will enfold you.

Children of War image“Children of War” was inspired when my friend and congregant (and producer of this album), Helen Nightengale, showed me this picture of two children, probably an older brother about 5 years old and a younger sister about 3, holding hands looking down the road at an approaching tank. Only later did I find out that these were two Palestinian children looking at an Israeli tank.

Honestly, as a rabbi who has long believed in the need for negotiated peace between Palestine and Israel that produces a sovereign Palestinian state alongside a sovereign Israel, I was not surprised by who the children were nor to whom the tank belonged.

More importantly, it doesn’t matter. There are also young Israeli children who are holding hands looking at incoming missiles from Gaza. It’s all insane and all fruitless. All children bleed the same. Peace will come when we all adults act like adults and “spiritually adopt” all children. That’s when we’ll “paint them a rainbow over steel-stained skies.”

~ Neil Comess-Daniels